What a great group we had today! We were able to help an author new to self-publishing with ideas for making things go more smoothly, inspire those who were feeling stuck to get writing again, and generally encourage each other. Here’s a summary of what we discussed.
Meet sister writing duo Liv Constantine this Thursday, July 22, at 5pm, as they talk about their latest USA today bestseller The Stranger in the Mirror at the charming Italian bistro Sal e Pepe in Newtown, CT. Lynne will be there in person, and Valerie will join via Zoom. This is their only live event in Connecticut, and $45 gets you the book, something to drink, and delicious appetizers too. Plus, a chance to have your book personally signed. Call 203 426 0805 to book your space.
If you’re self-published on Amazon, or published by a small press, you’ll earn back the money you spend on Rob Eagar’s online video course, Mastering Amazon for Authors. $399 if you register before registration closes on Thursday, July 22. It will include the updates Amazon has made to their KDP self-publishing system and all the best ways of using Amazon to sell more books. ou can watch a free webinar which will give you some idea about the course Rob is offering.
The Connecticut Press Club is holding its Awards Ceremony and Cocktail Party on Tuesday, July 27 at 6:30pm. All winners are invited and guests are welcome. Purchase tickets here. ($40 per person.) Award-winning journalist and TV personality Mercedes Velgot will emcee.
The Fairfield Public Library is running a writing contest, looking for creative non-fiction entries about an aspect of your culture or a family tradition. One submission per entrant of up to 750 words, submitted in PDF format. Entries should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org by August 3, with a reception for winners on Tuesday, August 10 at 6:30pm
The 13th annual Short Screenplay Challenge kicking off on August 20 is one of a series of competitions run by NYC Midnight. This one challenges writers around the world to create short screenplays no longer than 5 pages based on genre, location, and object assignments in 48 hours. Each writer will participate in at least two writing challenges and as many as four depending on how well they place in each challenge. There are thousands in cash and prizes for the winners and every submission receives feedback from the judges. Sound like fun? Learn more, register, and read previous winning screenplays here. Good luck writers! The entry fee is USD$48* until the early entry deadline of July 29 and USD$58* until the final entry deadline of August 19
The Woodhall Press is hosting a virtual one-day writers conference on August 21, with the theme: The Future of Writing. As an independent publisher of independent writers, the Woodhall Press Writers Conference aims to discover and support emerging writers. You’ll have an opportunity to attend workshops and panels on craft, and how to pitch your work. Attendees will have an open mic chance to pitch their work. Speakers include humorist Gina Barreca, writing guru Jane Friedman, Kim Budnick, Senior Acquisitions editor from audiobook publisher Tantor Media and author, editor and book coach Allison K. Williams (Seven Drafts: Self-Edit Like a Pro from Blank Page to Book). $175. Learn more and register here.
Literary Journal The Masters’ Review is running its annual Summer Short Story Award for New Writers, an annual contest that recognizes the best fiction from today’s emerging writers. The winning story (up to 6000 words) will be awarded $3000 and publication online. Second and third place stories will be awarded publication and $300 and $200 respectively. $20 entry fee. Deadline: August 30.
Hill-Stead, a National Historic Landmark in Farmington, CT, hosts an annual Sunken Garden Poetry Festival, which takes place this year from September 10-12. It celebrates poets laureate, Pulitzer Prize winners, and prestigious award recipients. In addition to poetry readings, you can attend musical events and poetry workshops. Among the poets this year are Nick Flynn, poet and memoirist (Some Ether), Martin Espada (Floaters), and Connecticut Poet Laureate Margaret Gibson, reading from her latest book The Glass Globe.
Publishing…and Other Forms of Insanity is an invaluable resource that, among other things, lists free writing contests, and sends out a monthly newsletter to tell you what’s coming up. I was surprised to find that there are several weekly contests in various genres, including poetry, flash fiction, and more.
Among those listed is The Readers Digest weekly contest for 100-word true stories about yourself. The weekly winner gets $100 and publication in the print magazine. Runners-up may be published in their online version. You can read stories by previous contest winners and favorites from the column. Submit here.
There’s more information to come on Monday. Until then, keep writing!