Elsewhere is looking for prose poetry and flash fiction that lives on the outskirts, where things are always almost said. Works feature online alongside beautiful photography. There is no closing date, but a new edition is published every two months.
Overland will be publishing work by new and emerging writers in a special online edition in mid-April. Writers will be paid $100 per story. Submissions close Monday March 10.
Writing the Walls Down, a multi-genre anthology that will explore the physical and metaphorical significance of walls in the lives of LGBTQ people, is accepting stories from international authors until Tuesday April 1 (submissions have been extended to this date, so please ignore the January deadline on their call out page).
The Tabor Adelaide Creative Writing Awards are open for entries with the theme ‘homecomings’ until Friday March 7.
The Henry Lawson Verse and Short Story Competition is accepting entries in a number of verse and short story categories until Friday March 28. A $2500 prize pool is up for grabs.
The FAW Queensland Poetry Competition is looking for poetry with passion, beauty and an understanding of life and its complexities until Monday March 31. First prize is $200, and two encouragement awards are worth $50.
MENTORSHIPS, INTERNSHIPS and OPPORTUNITIES
Lip Magazine is currently searching for a Managing Editor, who will oversee the daily running of the Lip website. This is a voluntary position that requires a commitment of 2 to 4 hours a day, depending on the amount of content to manage. Candidates will need a demonstrated ability to manage a team of writers and editors in addition to writing skills and a familiarity with Lip. Applications close Monday March 10.
Soot Magazine is seeking freelance writers with an interest in music, pop culture, literature and fashion to make ongoing contributions to the Soot website. This is an internship role, though a good way to build your profile. As bonus, you’ll also have the opportunity to interview some big-name artists, actors and performers.
The Melbourne Fringe Festival is looking for a part time Associate Producer (Keynote Project), and an Artists Services Coordinator to liaise with artists and handle core administrative tasks. Applications for both positions close Friday March 21.
The Guardian is filling a variety of roles in both Sydney and Melbourne – reporters, a subeditor, a PR/marketing manager and a deputy comment and culture editor, among others. Take a look at their website for full position descriptions.
I pretty much fail as badly as Stephen King when it comes to posting personal updates on Twitter.
On Twitter at last, and can't think of a thing to say. Some writer I turned out to be.—
Stephen King (@StephenKingAuth) December 06, 2013
But I’m still glued to my feed on and off all day, because a) I have some kind of internet addiction disorder, let’s be honest here, and b) it keeps me incredibly up-to-date with other writers, the publishing industry, competitions and job opportunities.
To that end, here are a few of my favourite handles:
It’s a great idea to follow the writers’ group in your state because their posts will be more relevant to your interests, but Writers Victoria are worth following regardless of your postcode. They post daily updates about Australia-wide publishing opportunities, grants, job openings and writing competitions. Follow them and you should have a general understanding of what’s happening in the industry on any given day.
“I’m not going to tell you how to start a bug-powered vehicle, I’m just going to put you inside one with somebody who knows how, and send you off on a ride.”
– Kameron Hurley
If, like me, you love nothing more than delving into your wildest imaginings to create worlds filled with chocolate rivers, people-gobbling mountains and villages of ice that float amid the Arctic seas… ahem. It’s easy to get carried away.
But worldbuilding is a complicated business that requires structure, planning and careful consideration. It’s not enough to create elaborate settings. We have to transport the reader, to make them believe in our world. To do this successfully, they have to make sense – even in their wildest form.
“Rees was thrust against the back of his cart as it hurtled along the track. He yelped. His hands ached from gripping the rail so hard. He hit a tunnel and darkness wrapped around him, thick as tar. He could feel himself rising, shooting upwards like a rocket. The next minute he was upside down. He knew this because he could feel his hair and cheeks hanging. The cart looped once, twice… maybe even three times until it finally levelled out and slowed its pace.”
An old scene I wrote… and I remember feeling so proud. How exciting! Kids will love it! It’s like being on a roller coaster!
Only this is what came back from an editor’s critique:
“When Rees goes on the cart ride he loops upside down a couple of times – why would this have been incorporated into the transport system? Everything in your world needs to adhere to an internal logic rather than simply being there arbitrarily.”
There’s some simple tips you can follow to build a world that successfully lures your readers along for the ride:
Flesh out the logic so that your world comes alive for the reader. How do things work in this world? What language do they speak? How is it accessed? How many people live there? Avoid leaving the reader with a question that disrupts their suspension of disbelief. Remember that the reader trusts you’ve thought of everything.
Having said that, don’t smother the story with needless descriptions of each pebble and blade of grass. Unless that blade of grass happens to be the key that opens the hidden portal to the ancient city of… ahem. Every detail needs to work towards progressing the reader in that space.
In novelist Chuck Wendig’s words, “The world serves the story, the story does not serve the world.” Meaning the world needs to accommodate and reflect the elements of your story: character, conflict, plot etc. To read his post on world building, click here. He has some great tips.
Let your characters build your world for you. Walk their walk, talk their talk, wear their clothes, unless they happen to be the latest Kevlar, lightweight body armour packed with radioactive explosives… Live their world through their eyes.
Create mannerisms, words, traits, effects that are unique to your world. All these features will help build mood and atmosphere as well as creating a point of difference.
I shall leave you with the wise words of Fantasy Author, Laini Taylor:
“I think with world building, it’s important to create a sense of culture even if it is just a fantasy, and the best way to do that is to look at a real human culture and see what makes it cohesive.”
What are your tips for world building? Do you have any good examples?
Writer’s Edit will be publishing the ultimate writer’s companion later in the year. They are looking for literary fiction, poetry, essays and lengthy pieces of writing advice until Friday February 28.
Mary, a Melbourne based creative and academic journal, is seeking previously unpublished fiction, poetry, essays and comics for its next print edition. Deadline is Friday April 4.
The Suburban Review is accepting fiction, non-fiction, poetry and art under the theme ‘Alien’ until Friday April 4.
And just a reminder that Ricochet Magazine is currently accepting fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, book reviews, photography and visual art for our upcoming online edition. The Australian authors of our favourite short story and poem will each receive a special book gift pack. Submissions close on Friday April 4.
The Laura Literary Awards, comprising the Flinders News Prose Awards and The CJ Dennis Poetry Awards, is open for entries until Friday February 14. First prize in both competitions is $200 and the open category attracts a $10 entry fee. Works will be published in the Flinders News and online.
The Rachel Funari Prize for Fiction is open for creative and insightful women’s stories until Friday February 28. There are many, many prizes up for grabs, including a $700 first prize, a pass to the Melbourne Writers’ Festival, a one year subscriptions to Voiceworks and an assortment of free books.
The Joanne Burns Microfiction/Prose Poem Award is looking for screen sized literature to be screened at Federation Square during the Melbourne Writers’ Festival. One winner will also receive $300 and publication in the Spineless Wonders’ anthology Flashing the Square. Entries close Monday March 31.
MENTORSHIPS, INTERNSHIPS and OPPORTUNITIES
There are four voluntary positions currently available at The Lifted Brow: Publicist, Advertising and Sponsorship Officer, Poetry and Flash Fiction Editor, and Interviews Editor. Get your applications in before 5pm Monday February 10. These are all excellent opportunities to gain experience and contacts in the literary industry – and as an added bonus you can come say hi to us, because we’re in the same office!
The National Young Writers’ Festival is looking for a Festival Coordinator to run the festival during 2014 and 2015. They’re also hiring three creative and energetic individuals to act as Co-Directors, and a dedicated Festival Manager. All positions are Newcastle based, and applications close Monday February 17.
And finally, the Melbourne Writers’ Festival is seeking three Program Interns and five Marketing, Development and Events Interns. Applications close on Thursday February 27. Again, this is an opportunity you shouldn’t ignore. If you want to learn about what goes into one of Australia’s biggest literary events, you should definitely think about applying.
One day, we decide to be a writer. It might be when we’re young or when we’re old; but the decision has been made. And while our reasons for writing vary, it’s pretty safe to say that most of us want our work to be received and appreciated. Serious writers want their writing to be read and published.
So what happens when it isn’t? What happens when we fail to find the success and reception that we’re looking for?
This is what separates the Sunday writers from those who want writing to be a part of their professional life. Making it in the writing world is tough – near to impossible. Most writers end up doing something completely unrelated to their passion to pay the bills. If you’re lucky, you’ll do an off-shoot of something to do with writing like copywriting or content writing for a corpo company. But it can be frustrating when you want to make it and your writing simply isn’t being read or published.
It can be a risky leap to voyage into writing with the hopes that you’ll actually get somewhere within it. Often, your timing and connections can have more to do with your success than your talent and hard work. It’s true that the more output you create, the more productive you are, the higher the chance that someone in the vast ‘out there’ of the world might find something they’re interested in. As for success that accumulates into what we’d call a career, it’s not always a fruitful field.
Writers who want to make it as writers should write often and persistently continue despite any rejections they might receive from publishers. Rejection will always hurt, even if you become more and more immune to it. You’ll ask yourself, “What’s the point of continuing when no one cares about my work?” In the past couple of months, I’ve been in this space and it’s so discouraging, mopey and counter-productive. You feel failure and loss as a writer and that nothing you produce is worthy of other people’s time. The fact of the matter is this: you shouldn’t see every first draft as a potential published piece, but as a declaration of your energy and motivation.
It helps to remember that most writers are not published at all. Their writing exists between the pages of notebooks tucked on bookshelves or underneath their beds in a private world that never sees the light of day.
It doesn’t make them any less of a writer, it just means their work has not yet been published.
Somehow, serious writers have got to find that ‘thing’ that no one can take away from them in regards to their work and their writing. You need to be resilient so that your self-esteem doesn’t chip away from rejection and criticism. I’m a serious writer who wants writing to be my career. But lately, I feel like this isn’t in the cards for me and as much as that makes me sad, I know that I can always continue writing for myself.
You’ll always have yourself and you’ll always have yourself as an audience. It’s more powerful than you think it is.
We’re now accepting submissions!
It’s on! We’re looking for innovative, daring and spectacular short fiction (up to 3,000 words), non-fiction, memoir, poetry, book reviews, photography and visual art for publication in our next issue.
If you’re unsure about anything, feel free to us your send pitches, questions and ideas and we will endeavour to get back to you as soon as possible with our feedback.
Please send your work to firstname.lastname@example.org. The selections process can take some weeks, so be patient with us. Expect to hear back from us 3-4 weeks after the submissions closing date.
The authors of our favourite short story and poem will each receive a special book gift pack!*
*Please note that due to postage costs this will be offered to Australian submissions only.
Unfortunately we can’t afford to pay for all submissions at this stage, as much as we would like to. What we can offer is an opportunity to share your work with a wider audience and editorial mentoring as needed.
If your submission is unsuccessful, we will aim to provide you with in depth feedback as soon as we can (response time will depend on the number of submissions we receive).
The final magazine will be a downloadable PDF publication. Past editions are available for download here.
Deadline: Friday April 4, 2014
Since Twilight (and the various paranormal romance novels it spawned), many readers seem all too eager to dismiss young adult fiction as silly. Frivolous. Unintelligent. God forbid, embarrassing. As a great lover of YA (and an ex-teenager), I think those snobs people couldn’t be more wrong.
To be specific, young adult fiction refers to novels that are marketed at 12 to 17 year olds. The genre has enticed streams of reluctant readers into the world of books – which is always a wonderful thing. And for those of us who never needed encouragement, young adult stories played a pivotal role as we navigated the terrific angst of teenage-hood.
But teens aren’t the only ones lapping YA up. Did you know that 55% of young adult fiction is purchased by readers over 18 years of age? That’s some cold, hard proof there is no shame in cracking open one of these stories…
NB: This list is by author, in no particular order. It is merely a selection from the world of YA. If I were to write about all the great books I read as a teenager, I would be sitting at my computer until next year.
1. J.K. Rowling – The Harry Potter series
Unless you live under a rock, you know this one.
Although Harry Potter is not strictly young adult, teenagers all over the world enjoy it. It was also the very first novel I read, so it gets on the list. Some people like to wear their non-Harry Potter reader status as a badge of honour, which puzzles me. It’s not too late. You’re not too old. This series is famous for a very good reason.