Author Archives: Harry

Season of Mists and TBR Lists

A POST FROM OUR EDITOR SUSAN DAVIS Please please read my book! No not mine. Although that would be nice. But to judge from Twitter and its sister sites, everyone and his granny has written a novel and would do … Continue reading

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Editing a novel: how the process actually works

There’s a lot of talk about the editor’s role in creating works of fiction. That talk has tended to concentrate on: The declining importance of actual old-fashioned editing in modern publishing – simply because sales & marketing grew in importance … Continue reading

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Good opening sentences: how to write ’em, how to edit ’em

At the wonderful post-Festival knees up in London last Friday, we ran a brief and for-fun exercise in giving live feedback on opening sentences. Because people enjoyed the event and because not everyone had their sentence read out, here goes … Continue reading

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Why screenwriters should write for the market that actually needs their services

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On the whole, writers are paid poorly and there is a vst over-production of supply. So professional novelists, for example, earn an average £11,000 for their year’s work, yet even so agents reject 999 in every 1000 manuscripts that come … Continue reading

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For self-publishers who want, you know, a book

We recently posted a long and comprehensive piece by David Gaughran which is your navigation guide to the world of e-publishing. The post is all about how to get your book up on to Amazon, how to format it right, … Continue reading

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Amazon-Hachette: by your words shall we know ye

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Amazon-Hachette: all fighting, no fun, right? We thought it was time to lighten up, so we’ve created two beautiful images, word clouds in both cases. The first one is based entirely on material taken from the Authors Guild, in the … Continue reading

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The winds of change

The publishing industry has, apparently, weathered the erevolution with remarkable ease. The transition to e-books appears to have broadly levelled off, at around 1/3 of the trade fiction market. Publishers remain profitable. Sales remain comfortable. The change seems to have … Continue reading

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How to Self-Publish your Book (It’s easier than you think)

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This post, by David Gaughran, is an all-you-need-to-know compilation about self-publishing . Obviously, there’s more to say about the subject than will fit into a single post, but there are links to everything else you will need. We’ve published other … Continue reading

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Agent transparency: an issue for every writer

Agents work very hard indeed. They are, the huge majority of them, among the most professional, ethical, passionate and committed people I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. They add a lot of value to authorial careers. They have … Continue reading

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17 Tips on how to commission your ebook cover design

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If you are planning to e-publish your book on Amazon and elsewhere, one of the biggest questions you’ll face is how to commission a cover that will sell your story, or non-fiction book, as hard and as effectively as possible. … Continue reading

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Average novel word count. (And when is YOUR novel too long?)

I’m like you. When I wrote my first novel – a very long one, as it happens – I started to worry that I was way off the mark. I was scared that agents would reject my book simply because … Continue reading

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How to Start Writing a Novel: the ten things to do right away

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You want to write a novel? Keen to get going? OK. Fine. Just make sure you do not write your first sentence. Not now, and not any time soon. I mean, you’ll get there soon enough, but first up, you … Continue reading

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How to edit a novel: bringing your manuscript to perfection

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I recently completed my fourth Fiona Griffiths novel – as yet untitled. The book is good. It’s got a good crime, contains a nice locked-room mystery, has one good (shocking) sequence midway through the story, and a proper all-action denouement … Continue reading

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Story Structure: beginnings, middles and ends in the novel

This meditation on story structure in the novel comes from William Kowalski, author of Eddie’s Bastard, The Hundred Hearts and other novels. The excerpt is taken from his ebook/PDF, Writing for First Time Novelists. The full text of that ebook … Continue reading

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Giants hitting each other with hammers

Some thoughts from Harry Bingham, an author published by both Hachette and Amazon … Unless you’ve been off on a long space voyage, you will have noticed the furore surrounding the contract dispute between Amazon and Hachette. The precise nature … Continue reading

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