Fall in love with writing this month

Dear writer,

It’s been a while since you last heard from me.

From now on, you’ll get my news on the second Sunday of each month and sometimes even more often. Here’s what I’d like to share with you at the moment.

Free writing resources 

– Valentine date with Sarah Selecky and the international community of writers; it will be a one-hour call at 6 pm CET using Calliflower (low-cost local  phone numbers are available as part of this app). Sign up here and you will get all the needed information. Even if you can’t make it, provided you’ve signed up, you’ll get the call recording.

– Writing prompt: use this as the opening line of a new story “Her eyes covered the silence in the room.” Set a timer. Write for at least 10 minutes, by hand, in your notebook. If you don’t feel like stopping, don’t. Set the timer for another 10 minutes. Then forget time. Just write.

Writing contests

The AWP Award Series is by now a well-established yearly tradition. The closing date for applications is 28 Feb. These AWP contests are suitable for book-length manuscripts of fiction, poetry, and non-fiction. For further details, go here.

The Little Bird Contest starts April 4th, so save the date in your calendar for now. It is suitable for short story writers.

The Fish Publishing Flash Fiction Contest also ends on Feb 28.

Writing workshops and retreats 

The Iceland Writers Retreat or IWR still has some spots left for this year’s retreat, which will take place in Reykjavik, Iceland in April. I attended this retreat two years ago, when it was at its second edition, and had a great time there connecting with writers and attending workshops led by well-known authors such as Sjon, Barbara Kingsolver, Ruth Reichl, Marcello Di Cintio, and Taiye Selasi (You may also know Taiye from this great TED talk about country of origin vs. country of choice). Register for IWR here.

Novel Writing Retreat at Squam Lake with Amity Gaige, one of my favourite writers and writing teachers. I love her writing philosophy so much that I have included part of it here. I might meet you there in person if you decide to sign up.

The Story Workshop 2017 is now full – but you can subscribe for news about other SSM programs, such as The Story Course (available any time) and The Story Intensive. To see what my current and previous students say about these online classes, go here.

Events in Munich 

– Lisa Yarger’s book launch at the Munich Readery on Sat, 18 or Sun, 19 Feb.

Emerging writers

Elena Kotsiliti is a writer and scientist born in Greece and currently living in Munich, Germany. She writes poetry in Greek and speculative fiction in English. Currently, she’s working on a memoir. Her poem Words was recently published in Greek in the magazine Black Sheep. Contact her for an English translation of the poem. Elena’s poem is emotionally engaging and rich in powerful imagery. She is a master of language and mood.

Simone Heller is a writer of fantasy who also offers editorial services, currently living in Regensburg, Germany. Her short story How bees fly was recently published in Clarkesworld Magazine. Simone has a mature voice that she fully owns. She has a strong command of craft tools and I particularly love her twist on POV in this story.

My writing

The Artist was recently published in Quail Bell Magazine; it was previously short-listed in Listowel’s Writer Week Originals Short Story contest and long-listed in the Disquiet International Literary Prize competition.

To the Other Side was published in Flash Fiction Magazine. It was subsequently selected for an anthology to soon be published by 101 words, as one of the best stories published in this magazine.

If there is anything that made you go wow in this post, or subjects related to writing that you’d be interested in but I haven’t addressed yet, I’d love to know. Please comment below.

With writerly love,


2 responses

  1. Thank you for the writing resources.
    I’m experimenting writing in English, though it’s not my first language. It’s not easy and resources like these are very welcome.

    • Thank you for your feedback, Teodora. English isn’t the first language of many writers (including myself), so my advice is simple: don’t give up. Keep writing and telling your truth. When it comes to this, writing is a lot like working out: we need to keep training our muscles to keep them fit. It sounds like something you love doing. Experimenting is good. It means you’re having fun!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.