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                    W R I T I N G  W O R L D

                             PART 1

  A World of Writing Information - For Writers Around the World


Issue 1:19-1           6550 subscribers         November 15, 2001
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       From the Editor's Desk
       News from the World of Writing
       New on Writing-World.com
       FEATURE: Handling the Media Interview, by Michelle Giles
       The Write Sites - Online Resources for Writers
       WRITING DESK: SASEs, Samples, Bylines and Lead Time
            by Moira Allen
       Market Roundup/Writing Contests

                      FROM THE EDITOR'S DESK

If You're Missing Half Your Newsletter...
For reasons that remain a mystery, many subscribers do not
receive Part II of the newsletter.  If this happens to you, don't
worry, you haven't been overlooked!  Just let me know, and I'll
send you the second half immediately.  Meanwhile, I'm working
on resolving this with my mailing-list host.

If You're Missing Your Newsletter Entirely...
Many free e-mail services (such as Yahoo! and Hotmail) impose a
quota on the number of messages you can store in your "inbox." If
your mailbox is "full" (or "over quota"), your newsletter (and
other messages) will "bounce."  I receive numerous "mailbox full"
bounces on every issue -- and if your newsletter bounces because
your mailbox is full, I do not automatically resend.  Some
services also impose a limit on the length of messages that can
be received.  Each half of the Writing World newsletter is
usually around 25K; please make sure that your service will
accept messages of that length.

A Note from a Reader
Just read your latest issue of Writing World. The easiest way to
format a Word (or any other word processing) document for an
e-mail is to paste it into a simple text editor such as Wordpad.
Doing so removes all the special formatting. Most people have one
of these programs on their computer but don't use it. I send out
dozens of e-mail newsletters and use this technique all the time.
- Tim Bete, Co-director, Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop

Next Issue Will Be Delayed
The next issue of Writing World will be delayed by a day or two.
I'll be on vacation, and won't be back until the 30th of
November.  The newsletter will be mailed on the 30th (Friday)
or the 1st (Saturday).

There's Still Room in Writing-World.com's Magazine Class!
There are still a few spaces left in the forthcoming class,
"Breaking into the Magazine and Periodical Market."  If you're
having trouble making that first sale, or are amassing a
collection of rejection slips, this is the class for you!  The
class includes e-mail lectures, e-mail discussion, and hands-on
review and critiquing of your outline, query and article draft.
It begins January 15; sign up before December 15 and get a 10%
discount.  For a complete outline of the course and registration
instructions, see http://www.writing-world.com/classes/index.html

New Book Drawing
If you missed your chance to win a copy of my "Writer's Guide to
Queries, Pitches and Proposals," don't despair!  Allworth Press
is giving away another five copies of the book.  To enter the
drawing, please visit

                        -- Moira Allen (Moira Allen)
Allen, puts all the "pitch" information you need in one handy
reference: How to query magazines, e-zines and newspapers; how
to sell (or syndicate) a column; how to write a book proposal or
novel synopsis; how to approach an agent; how to find corporate
freelancing jobs; how to find a teaching or speaking position;
how to get writing grants; more. For more details, see


NWU in Negotiations with Primedia
The National Writers Union is negotiating with Primedia, the
largest special-interest magazine publisher in the U.S. (with 280
titles).  The NWU is working on an arrangement whereby Primedia
will use its "Publication Rights Clearinghouse" to market
"content owned by individual writers."  The release doesn't
indicate how writers will be involved in the process. Primedia
has had a long history of all-rights and work-for-hire contracts;
the NWU expresses hope that this will change, which would be a
major victory for writers.

E-Ink Reader Unveiled
A new e-book reader weighing only 9 ounces has been unveiled by
E-Ink, makers of "electronic paper." The device uses E-Ink's
technology of microcapsules printed on a sheet of plastic film.
The capsules contain positively charged white particles and
negatively charged black particles; when a positive field is
applied to the capsule, the white particles move to the top, and
vice versa.  The device requires very little power, which means
fewer battery recharges.  When released for sale, the device is
expected to be only one centimeter thick, with a seven-inch
diagonal screen, and run on AA batteries.  It will synchronize
with the user's PC with a USB or parallel port.  The device is
expected to come on the market in 2003, for a price tag of about

Does AOL Own Your Words?
AOL's terms of service have always declared that AOL has the
right to use any content posted on its message boards and chat
rooms.  Now a number of writers who use AOL are upset at the
service's decision to compile messages posted on those boards and
forums into a book titled "Because We Are Americans: What We
Discovered on September 11, 2001."  All profits from the book
will be distributed to relief funds -- but many users feel that
AOL should have asked permission, or asked the posters of
messages to sign a waiver, before using the material -- even if
the use is technically legal.  If nothing else, this is a
reminder to Internet "chatters" to be careful what you say, and
where you say it!


                    NEW ON WRITING-WORLD.COM

From Self-Published Novelist to Best-Selling Author:
An Interview With Richard Paul Evans, by Carolyn Campbell

Writing the 'Not-So-Simple' Haiku, by Patricia Spork

How to Improve Your Writing Without Writing a Word,
by Chandra Beal

Keeping it Sweet While Turning Up the Heat,
by MaryJanice Davidson
(Writing "sweet" romances)

Electronic Publishing: Subsidy vs. Nonsubsidy, by Karen Weisner
(Excerpted from Electronic Publishing: The Definitive Guide)

E-mail Queries and Submissions: How to Keep Editors Happy,
by Moira Allen


New listings added regularly to the "Writers Wanted" section:

EDITING, CRITIQUES, TUTORING & MORE: Let a fiction specialist
take your writing to a new level. Member, Editors' Association
of Canada & published writer with 10+ years' experience. E-mail
Marg at Scripta Word Services for info: margilks[at]worldchat.com

                             by Michelle Giles (mg12[at]gateway.net)

A media interview is your chance to sell yourself to the public.
Whether you appear in a newspaper article, on a radio show, or a
cable television program, you want to present yourself as an
interesting, talented and professional writer. And you can
achieve this if you do one simple thing -- prepare.

First, remember that everything you say is "on the record," which
means the reporter can print or record whatever you tell him.

Next, always tell the truth. Anything you say can likely be
checked with one phone call. If a reporter catches you lying, you
will lose all your credibility, and he probably won't use your
story. You need to establish yourself as a credible source.

Keeping those points in mind, the most important part of your
preparation is to anticipate the interviewer's questions and have
your answers ready.

The reporter will ask about you and your writing. Typical
questions include: What is your novel/story about? When did you
start writing? Why do you write? When do you write? What is your
professional background? What do you read? Have you won any
awards? Where has your writing been published?

Every answer should make you sound good. Leave out anything
negative. You want to provide great quotes and sound bites.

Most reporters will ask your age. If you don't want anyone to
know how old you are, have an answer ready like "I'm just a day
over 21" or "I'm in my early '40s."

When describing your novel, make sure you don't give away the
ending. You want people to go out and buy your book. Don't ruin
it for them!

Think of anecdotes that describe your writing experiences.
Anecdotes are an easy way for the public to identify with you.
Stories about how you get ideas for your writing or even how your
day job ties in with your writing often make great anecdotes.

Some reporters may ask you for another source to speak about your
writing. Have someone in mind, either a teacher, an editor or a
writer friend, and get their permission to give their name and
phone number to the reporter.

If you are doing a newspaper interview, it will be conducted
either by telephone or in-person.

For a telephone interview, have everything you need in front of
you. Write out your answers to the questions--the reporter won't
know you are reading. Also, have your resume handy. When you are
nervous, it's hard to remember the exact dates of when you left
your last job or started your current one. Make sure you have the
names and locations of the magazines where you've published work.
You want to give specific answers to show the reporter you know
what you are talking about.

In addition, spell out anything that can be misconstrued. A
friend of mine, during a phone interview, told a reporter the
name of her novel, Spirit Sleuth, but didn't spell it out. The
reporter printed Spirits Loose.

For a one-on-one interview, the reporter will probably come to
your home or office. Make sure the setting, and your clothes,
project the image you want to portray. Even if the newspaper
photographer is coming at a different time, the reporter will
notice what you're wearing and your surroundings because they
describe your character, and he may print it.

You also need to memorize the answers to the questions you've
anticipated. You can type up a biography and a summary of your
novel/story and give that to the reporter. It will save time and
avoid possible mistakes.

For a radio interview, call up ahead of time and find out the
format. You want to know how long the show will be, if it will be
a question/answer interview, or if you will take questions from

Remember to keep your tone conversational and use anecdotes. With
radio, you can probably get away with using a couple of sheets of
notes containing key words for reference. Avoid using "like" and
"umm" in your speech. Practice on a tape recorder.

For a television interview, again, call up and find out the
format. Even small cable stations are now technologically
advanced and use teleprompters. The station may want you to
forward questions to the host beforehand.

As in radio, keep your tone conversational and use anecdotes.
Watch your hand gestures; too many can be distracting on TV.
Typically you will look at the host--not the camera--throughout
the interview, but ask ahead of time.

Also, dress properly. Red and blue are good colors for TV. Have a
friend videotape you to see what colors are right for you and to
practice presenting yourself.

Overall, it's best to start with the smaller local media, then
work your way up. Even if you follow all these tips, you will
probably make a few mistakes, and the smaller media will serve as
great practice. After all, isn't it better to make a mistake on
Channel 8 than Good Morning America?

And speaking of mistakes, after the newspaper article appears or
the radio or TV interview runs, you will likely find some minor
inaccuracies. Unless it is a huge mistake, don't call to
complain. The media has given you great free coverage and you
will need them again in the future. You want to stay on good

Lastly, send a thank-you note to the interviewer. It's a small
thing to do, and it shows that you appreciate what they have done
for you.

Remember, a media interview is just like a job interview. You
have to sell yourself. And if you're prepared, you can guarantee
a great sale!


NJRW member Michelle Giles is deputy director of communications
for the New Jersey Assembly and frequently speaks on media
promotion for writers.  This article originally appeared in
"Spilled Candy".

Copyright (c) 2001 Michelle Giles

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       The Write Sites - Online Resources for Writers
       WRITING DESK: SASEs, Samples, Bylines, and Lead Time
            by Moira Allen
       Market Roundup/Writing Contests

                         THE WRITE SITES

Memoir Writing
Want to write your life story?  You'll find loads of tips on how
to get started, plus markets and contests for memoirs.

Fearless Reviews
If you're a self-publisher or independent press, you can get your
book(s) reviewed on this section of the "Fearless Books" site.

Synonyms for Said
Tired of "he said, she said" dialogue tags?  Here's a list of
possible alternatives (but use them sparingly!).

Copywriting FAQ
If you'd like to know what's involved in copywriting (advertising)
and how to get started, this FAQ answers a host of questions.

Write to Inspire
A new and inspiring resource for Christian writers (with some
tips that could help anyone).

Freelance Article Writing
A long article that is an excellent overview of how to prepare
and submit material and "establish and maintain good relationships
with magazine editors."

WRITING.COM - by Moira Allen - Your guide to making the most of
online resources and information for writers.  Find new markets,
learn online research secrets, get the most from networking
opportunities. Available as print or e-book; electronic edition
includes FREE bonus book, "1200 Online Resources for Writers."
For details, see http://www.booklocker.com/bookpages/writing.html

                         by Moira Allen (Moira Allen)

SASEs, Samples, Bylines and Lead Time

Q: I was going through some Writer's Market listings lately and
came across a few things that I did not understand.  They are:

1. #10 SASE(I'm aware that SASE means a Self-addressed Stamped
2. Byline given
3. Editorial lead time (? months)

Also, if I'm ordering sample copies, how do I determine how much
postage I'm supposed to put on the SASE? I do not live in the US.
Do you think it would be appropriate to call up a particular
publication's office to find out?

1. #10 SASE

A #10 envelope is the U.S. basic business-letter size envelope.
It's the size that would hold a letter on 8.5x11 paper, folded in
thirds. This may be a bit of a problem for you, as I imagine you
have a corresponding "standard" envelope that fits A4 paper --
which would be a little smaller in width than a #10. Thus, your
standard business envelope won't easily hold a typical U.S.
letter. However, I would go ahead and use it anyway; it won't
frustrate editors too badly to have to fold a letter a bit

2. Byline given

This simply means that your name will go on the piece. Most
publications DO give bylines; this listing always surprises me.
Like I'm expecting NOT to be credited for my work? Some
publications also consider a brief bio (two or three lines about
the author) to be part of the "byline".

3. Editorial lead time

Editorial lead time refers to the length of time before a
particular issue that articles must be received -- OR, how long
it takes between receipt of an article and publication of an

For example, most magazines in the U.S. work AT LEAST three to
four months ahead, and some work five to six months ahead; a few
of the larger ones  may even work six to eight months ahead. This
means that an editor may be working on the December issue of a
magazine in August, or July, or even as early as June. This is
the "editorial lead time" required to submit an article that
would be appropriate for the December issue. If you wanted to
submit a piece to that publication on Christmas, you would need
to get it to the editor by August (or July or June) -- whatever
is stated as the "editorial lead time." If your material is
targeted toward a particular issue or season, find out what the
editorial lead time is for a publication, and submit the material
that far in advance of the issue you're targeting.

If your material could go in "any" issue (it's not targeting a
particular event or season), editorial lead time isn't as
important. You can submit such material any time. However, you
need to be aware that if a magazine has an editorial lead time
of, say, six months, it will be AT LEAST six months between the
time you submit (and are accepted) and the time the material
MIGHT appear. In reality, however, most editors are buying well
in advance of their lead time. In September, an editor may be
WORKING on the December or January issue of a publication -- but
may be BUYING material for the following spring or even summer.
Some magazines buy material as much as a year ahead of an issue.

4. Sample copies

The question about sample copies is baffling even within the U.S.
A lot of publications just say "send SASE for sample" -- and you
know perfectly well this means extra postage, but how much? When
international mail is involved, the cost, of course, goes up. You
could end up paying far more for postage than you'd have paid for
the magazine itself.

My first recommendation would be to check whether you have a
newsstand locally that can get copies of U.S. publications. If
you do, find out whether they can order copies of specific
publications that you're interested in.

If you can't obtain samples locally, don't bother asking the
publisher how much it would cost to ship a sample overseas,
because most folks just aren't going to know. Most businesses
don't mail things regularly outside the U.S., and aren't going to
know what postal rates are (above the most basic single-letter
rate) -- and they probably aren't going to have an international
postal chart handy.

Instead, ask 1) How large a SASE you need to send, and 2) HOW
MANY FIRST-CLASS STAMPS you should put on the SASE to have the
sample copy shipped (as if you were shipping it within the U.S.).
That will tell you how many ounces the publication weighs. Most
folks don't keep odd denominations of postage handy, so they're
just going to put on one first-class stamp per ounce. So, if
someone tells you that you'll need three first-class stamps, you
can be fairly certain that the magazine weighs three ounces.

Next, go to the U.S. Post Office page, which has an international
rate calculator:


Choose "envelope" as the type of item you want to mail. Hit
"continue" and it will ask you what country you want to mail to,
and the weight of the item. I chose Australia, and put in "3
ounces." This gave a list of options, of which the cheapest was
"Airmail Letter Post," which would cost $2.60 U.S.

If the publisher told you that you need to send an 8x12 SASE with
three first-class stamps, you now know that you need to send an
8x12 SASE with $2.60 in U.S. postage -- AND you should write
"AIRMAIL" on the envelope. You can purchase the postage itself
from that same website - go to


I would ask about shipping rates by e-mail, if an e-mail address
is provided, to save you the added cost of an international phone
call. Don't bother mentioning that you're from outside the U.S.,
as this might just confuse the issue.


Moira Allen has been writing and editing for more than 20 years.
If you have a question for "The Writing Desk," please e-mail it
to Moira Allen.

Copyright (c) 2001 by Moira Allen

101 Paying Markets for Essays, Columns & Creative Nonfiction: 101
writers' markets for personal essays. Features clickable links to
publications' guidelines, how-to and genre resources. Download
at: http://writerslounge.com/101_markets.html
New monthly online publication is seeking submissions: personal
essays from around the globe. Please check out
http://www.sevenseasmagazine.com or e-mail:
SEEKING SUBMISSIONS: Parenting For One, an e-zine for single
parents set to launch January 1, 2002, is seeking submissions.
For a list of topics and complete guidelines, please visit

                          MARKET ROUNDUP

Jack Canfield & Mark Victor Hansen, Editors
Chicken Soup for the Soul, P.O. Box 30880, Santa Barbara, CA 93130
URL: http://www.chickensoup.com
E-mail: americasoul[at]chickensoupforthesoul.com

We have begun to receive stories from many of our contributors
and readers that have emerged from people's responses to the
terrorist attacks and the human tragedy that has ensued --
everything from touching moments of community at memorial
services, a letter from a mother to her son's teacher about the
need to teach about freedom and what it truly means, a seeing eye
dog that helped his blind companion from the 84th floor to safety
at the World Trade Center, to the spontaneous outpouring of
national pride by a bunch of teenagers in small town America. In
addition there are the countless e-mails that are being
circulated around the country and around the world sharing
stories and essays calling us to go to the deeper meaning of
these tragic events. As a result, we are considering compiling a
book tentatively entitled Chicken Soup for the Soul of America:
Stories of Heroism, Courage, and Compassion in Our Time of
National Tragedy. Our intention is to donate the profits from the
book to the appropriate relief organizations, especially the ones
supporting the families who have lost loved ones during this

We are writing to you to request that if you have written
anything, or feel moved to write anything, that you send us a
copy for us to review for possible inclusion in this potential
book. Also, if a moving story that someone else wrote passes
through your hands or your computer, please forward a copy to us.
Hopefully, as writers and editors, we can use our skills and
talents to contribute in some small way to the healing of America
-- indeed the healing of the world -- one story at a time. This
has always been our mission; now, more than ever, we have a huge
opportunity to fulfill that mission.

We invite you to send whatever you feel is appropriate -- quotes,
poems, stories, essays, touching cartoons and drawings, and
e-mails -- that would contribute to such a volume. We'll keep you
posted as to how this project unfolds. If there is indeed enough
to warrant a book, we will recontact you to discuss how to
proceed from there. Please send your contributions by e-mail.


James Malinchak, Editor
P.O. Box 530061, Henderson, NV 89012
URL: http://www.chickensoup.com
E-mail: JamesMal[at]aol.com

We would like to invite you to make a submission for new book,
Chicken Soup for the ATHLETE'S Soul, by submitting inspirational,
heart-warming stories. The stories may be written by you or
someone else. (You will be acknowledged for your submission). Our
goal is to make a difference and empower athletes of all ages to
overcome challenges and pursue their dreams. The book is

*Athletes and the issues they face in sports
*Families & Friends who have a loved one who is an Athlete
*Families & Friends who have faced issues that Athletes face
*Anyone associated with Athletes & the issues Athletes face

The maximum word count is 1500 words.  Some of the chapters will
relate to: Overcoming Obstacles, Going for Dreams, Special
Moments, Athletes Wisdom, Sportmanship, Family & Friends, and
Special Relationships Developed through Athletics.

LENGTH: 1500 words maximum.
RIGHTS: One-time
SUBMISSIONS: E-mail preferred.


P.O. Box 31453, Santa Fe, NM 87594-1453; Fax: 505-989-4486.
URL: http://www.chickensoup.com
E-mail: samarston[at]earthlink.net

Some of the topics in Chicken Soup for the Midlife Soul will
include: Midlife Romances, On Adventure, Reclaiming Yourself and
Your Dreams, Overcoming Obstacles, On Parenting, Speaking Our
Minds, On Spirituality, On Aging and Our Changing
Body/Appearance, Treasuring Friendships, Menopause, The Gifts of

If you have a great story, poem, or a cartoon clip about a
midlife experience and would like to be included in Chicken Soup
for the Midlife Soul, please send your stories to the address
listed above. (Please keep copies as we are unable to return

The maximum word count is 1200 words. For each story selected for
the book, a 50 word biography will be included about the author
and a permission fee will be paid for one-time rights. There are
no limits on the number of submissions. Stories must be received
no later than December 15, 2001.

LENGTH: 1200 words maximum.
RIGHTS: One-time
DEADLINE: December 15, 2001
SUBMISSIONS: E-mail preferred.


URL: http://www.chickensoup.com
E-mail: christianwoman[at]chickensoupforthesoul.com

This is your chance to share with millions how your faith in
Christ has blessed your life! Chicken Soup for the Christian
Woman's Soul is collecting true stories that will lift up
spirits, nourish souls, and deepen faiths--stories that will
inspire readers to live a Christ-centered life by practicing
faith, hope, charity, love, and forgiveness. These stories about
what is really important in life will encourage others to act in
accordance with those higher priorities. Please share your
heart-warming, insightful, humorous and powerfully moving stories
(up to 1400 words), clipped articles, and/or quotations before
our December 1, 2001 deadline. Please send your submissions as an
e-mail attachment. We recommend that you use Microsoft Word as
your word processing application.

LENGTH: 1400 words maximum.
RIGHTS: One-time
DEADLINE: December 1, 2001
SUBMISSIONS: E-mail as MS Word Attachment



For information, contact Nancy Autio, Acquisitions Editor
E-mail: nautio[at]chickensoupforthesoul.com



What a Chicken Soup story "ISN'T"

It isn't a sermon, an essay, or eulogy. It isn't "Let me tell you
why I am the best athlete" or "Why my coach is the best" or "My
teammate just died and let me tell you how wonderful he/she was"
followed by a personal testimony that means nothing to the
reader. It isn't about politics or ultra-controversial issues. A
Chicken Soup story is not a term paper, classroom assignment,
thesis, letter, journal entry or a motivational speech stating,
"To be successful you need to do..."

What a Chicken Soup story "IS"

It is an inspirational, true story about ordinary people doing
extraordinary things. Chicken Soup stories are personal and are
filled with vivid images. In some stories, the reader feels that
he/she is actually "there" in the scene with the people involved.
Chicken Soup stories have heart... but also something extra...
that element that makes us FEEL more helpful, more connected,
more thankful, more passionate, and better about life in general.
Chicken Soup stories often end with a "punch"... CREATING EMOTION
rather than talking about it. The stories should leave the reader
with one or more of the following: Goosebumps, butterflies,
hearfelt tears, an "aaah" feeling a good belly laugh, or a more
exalted reason to FEEL alive.


"FNASR": First North American Serial Rights, "SASE":
self-addressed, stamped envelope, "GL": guidelines.
If you have questions about rights, please see "Rights: What
They Mean and Why They're Important, by Marg Gilks, at

Please send market news to Moira Allen

Face the writing challenge!
Can you write the best story with an unique twist ending?
Your story read by thousands! Win cash prizes every two weeks!

                        WRITING CONTESTS

This section lists contests open to all writers and that charge
no entry fees (unless otherwise noted). For dozens of additional
contest listings from around the world, visit


                    Arleigh Burke Essay Contest

DEADLINE: December 1, 2001
GENRE: Essay
LENGTH: 3,500 words maximum
THEME: "Essays must persuasively discuss a topic relating to the
objective of the U.S. Naval Institute: The advancement of
professional, literary, and scientific knowledge in the naval and
maritime services, and the advancement of the knowledge of sea
PRIZES: 1st $3,000 + medal, 2nd $2,000, 3rd $1,000 + publication
ADDRESS: Marine Corps Essay Contest, US Naval Institute, 291 Wood
Road, Annapolis, MD 21402-5034
PH: 410-268-6110 FAX: 410-269-7940
WEBSITE: http://www.usni.org/Membership/CONTESTS.htm


              Screenplay as Literature Competition

DEADLINE: December 15, 2001
GENRE: Screenplay
LENGTH: screenplay
THEME: Screenplay is very pleased to announce the opening of
a unique new screenplay competition. The "Screenplay as
Literature" Competition seeks to encourage recognition and
promote appreciation of the screenplay as a legitimate literary
art form.
PRIZES: The winning screenplay will be published in book form and
made available in hard cover, trade paper back and e-book
formats. Original cover art will be provided by a top New York
graphic artist. The book will be registered with Amazon.com,
Borders.com, Ingram, Books in Print, and other booksellers (brick
and mortar as well as web). A promotional website devoted
entirely to the book and screenplay will be developed with the
talents of a top web-designer. Both book and screenplay will be
promoted on the screenplay website as well. The book will
also be marketed via other avenues (email campaigns, book shows,
etc.). The winning screenplay will receive an intensive (25-35
pages) script analysis by a professional analysis and working
writer. Total prize cash value is $5,000+. More prizes are in the
WEBSITE: http://www.screenplaylit.com

Writing World's Contest Listings are sponsored by THE WORLD'S
BIGGEST BOOK OF WRITING CONTESTS - http://www.ult-media.com

                     AUTHOR'S BOOKSHELF

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                 Copyright (c) 2001 Moira Allen
         Individual articles copyrighted by their authors.
Editor/Publisher: MOIRA ALLEN (Moira Allen)

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