I have been reading...


A QUIET KIND OF THUNDER

By Sara Barnard




PAPER BUTTERFLIES

By Lisa Heathfield




TH1RTEEN R3ASONS WHY

By Jay Asher




ONE

by Sarah Crossan




A BOY CALLED HOPE

by Lara Williamson




     



      


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Magic Beans - need help editing or preparing your children's novel for submission or e-book publication? I can help.


Applecore Books - the home of realistic, conemporary fiction.


        









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A random selection of posts from my blog...



We need to talk about Brain Waves

Iíve recently finished the first draft of my brand spanking new novel. Itís the first entirely new Ďthingí Iíve written in a couple of years Ė personal reasons Ė and Iíd forgotten the utter joy you feel when you forget about life happening around you, put a gag on your critical self, and give creativity some breathing space ...

 

Forgiving Myself

I often think about the irony of having written a book in which a young girl unwittingly becomes a Young Carer only to find myself some years later, as an Old Carer. Itís not something I planned Ė not something any carer plans Ė but when my elderly dad needed to move nearby, and when his new home in sheltered housing was flooded by Hurricane Desmond, my own life went on hold ...

 

Top Tip #1 - Read your work out loud

Okay Ė so not everyone can afford to have Ellen Degeneres read their book out loud, but thereís a lesson here. If you read your work aloud, youíll see (and hear) all sorts of potential problems you couldnít find otherwise ...

 

Reading fiction makes the world a better place

Reading about the lives of other people is enlightening and educational. When you read, you are using your imagination to climb into the minds, hearts and lives of others and take on their world and their emotions. Good writing Ė whatever your genre Ė should be able to make the reader feel, what the character feels; whoever they are, wherever they live, whatever they believe ... 

 

Let's call it a detour...

I have decided to head back down the long road to traditional publishing. I can hardly believe that itís been two and a half years since I first took a detour through Indie Land Ė where did all that time go? Iíve learned a HUGE amount about the publishing industry, marketing and social media, sold a truckload of books (a small truck), won awards, been studied by University students, got a commission to write a book for a care leavers charity, and had lots of fun; all this on the back of my self-publishing endeavours. So I donít regret it for a minute ...

  

The Psychoanalysis of an Aspiring Writer

Nan Bovington calls herself an aspiring writer, but if youíve ever read her blog Ė The Essential Guide to Being Unpublished Ė you will know that nothing could be further from the truth ... 

 

I'm proofreading

Proofreading. Itís what you do AFTER editing and BEFORE publication.  Iím talking Errors. Typos. Missed words. Misspellings. The little stuff the eye doesn't always see, especially if youíre gripped by the writing. Your writing. You get so engrossed with whatís about to happen when ...   

 

When youíre stuck Ö

Anyone who has ever written a novel will tell you it is easier to start than finish. I donít think it particularly matters whether you plan meticulously or write in free fall, the beginning of a novel is always exciting and full of possibility. You write those first chapters with a head full of ideas and a heart full of optimism; of course you do, or you wouldnít even get started ...

 

23 things to avoid

Here's another repeat posting from the now defunct Magic Beans Blog - because I am in the throws of editing and it's always worth remembering how NOT TO do it ... 

 

Character development - out of the blue

You've put flesh on the bones of your protagonist, (let's call her Hortensia) and chances are, you've fallen in love ... 

 

Top 10 tips on writing for children

Your story should always be about a child, a group of children, or a creature children will relate to; for example, an animal or being from another realm ... 

 

5 Reasons Why We Write Realistic Fiction For Young Adults by @ApplecoreBooks

1) Real life is what we know ~ We are both teachers and have both specialised in working with young people whose lives are fraught with real life problems; the lonely and isolated, the economically disadvantaged, the emotionally unsupported ...  

 

Dear Author, Where do you get your ideas from?

One of my young readers contacted me this week. She had lived in foster care for several years and had ended up in a school like High Fell Hall, the school in Where Bluebirds Fly. She was very open about her own troubled life and said my book had made her feel that good things do come out of bad ... 

 

A Day in the Life of a Writer

I entered a competition last month over at the Rave Reviews Book Club. I didn't win, but then again I didn't do it to win ... all right, all right, I did. But hey, it was fun ... 

 

Holy Crucial Moment!

Iím reading a book. If youíve read it, youíll know which one Iím talking about, but if you havenít itís not important. For the purposes of this post I shall call it Batman and Robin. Itís an intriguing story ... 

 

Some Proper Good Writing Tips from a Proper Clever Writer

Recently, a bunch of pretty useful writing tips landed on my desk. They were collected by a proper clever writer (letís call him Ernie), who gave them to my Ďfriendí (letís call him Bert) who shared them with me (letís call me Mildred Huxtetter). And I thought, Super! We should share these with the entire human race ...