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

   A World of Writing Information - For Writers Around the World

                   http://www.writing-world.com


Issue 6:06           16,200 subscribers               June 1, 2006
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SPECIAL NOTICE: Please DO NOT REPLY to this e-mail; any messages
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                           CONTENTS
=================================================================

	From the Editor's Desk
	NEWS from the World of Writing
	THE INQUIRING WRITER:  Are we getting jaded by the Internet?
		by Dawn Copeman
	FEATURE: Why Going to a Writers' Conference Pays Off
		by Susan Denney
	The Write Sites -- Online Resources for Writers
	WRITING DESK: Are Fillers Really the Best Way to "Break In"?
		by Moira Allen
	BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO... Beating Writer's Block
		by Dawn Copeman
	WHAT'S NEW at Writing World
	WRITING CONTESTS with no entry fees
	The Author's Bookshelf

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                     FROM THE EDITOR'S DESK
=================================================================

So What's My Excuse This Month?
-------------------------------
Sheer exhaustion, that's what! I've just completed a marathon
two-week editing stint... on my husband's new book!  While he
frantically pounded out the last chapters on his downstairs
computer, I read them, red-penciled them, and finally sat down to
my upstairs (laptop) computer to input my editorial changes and
those suggested by another reviewer.  The subject?  "Information
Operations Planning."  Sounds a bit "writerly" but it actually
has to do with planning information operations in wartime (and
peacetime).  Fascinating stuff; some chapters were 70 pages long.
Patrick was so happy to finally get it finished that he
celebrated the three-day weekend by writing a paper...


Changes Coming to the Website...
--------------------------------
As part of my grand scheme to spend more time writing and less
time HTMLing, I decided at the beginning of the year to update
the website only once a month (in conjunction with the
newsletter).  However, I realized that this gives readers no
incentive to VISIT more than once a month -- so I've decided to
go back to the "old ways."  Beginning in June, instead of posting
three or four articles all at once at the beginning of each
month, I'll be posting a new feature every week.  Each month's
newsletter will include a list of the features posted the
preceding month.  I also hope to launch a weekly (or at least
biweekly) online editorial, as I'm finding that the monthly
newsletter format doesn't give me nearly enough opportunity to
rant, muse, and otherwise pontificate on some of the issues that
keep cropping up in the publishing business.  It will also give
me a chance to muse, ramble, and otherwise "go on and on" about
the writing life in general and my writing life in particular.

And that being said, let me launch the column with my own answer
to last month's question as to whether writers are getting
"jaded" with the Internet!


Have We Changed How We Use and View the Internet?
-------------------------------------------------
It occurred to me after I asked this question that I have been
"involved" with the Internet for almost precisely a decade. It
was in 1996 that I began to get involved with the Inkspot website
-- and began writing about the "relationship" between writers and
the Internet.  Needless to say, a great deal has changed!

For example, around 1996 or 1997, I tried to pitch an
Internet-related book to Writers Digest Books.  They weren't
interested.  Why?  Because, they told me, they really didn't see
writers getting that "involved" with the Internet!  Another
publisher, who was handling my pet book, turned down my offer to
set them up with a free book catalog site online, because they
didn't think that pet owners were going to be involved with the
Internet!  (So much for the vision thing...)

If you've been "online" for the past decade or longer, you can
probably remember those heady days when everything seemed new and
exciting.  In those days, I wrote articles that used lots of
phrases like "for the first time, we can..."  We could find
information on just about any subject in the world without
visiting a library.  We could talk to writers around the world
without paying for a stamp -- or for a long-distance phone call.
We could participate in a writer's group without leaving our
living-room.  We could subscribe to free writing newsletters that
are packed with more (and more current) information than most of
the paid subscription magazines.  Best of all, we could send our
queries and articles directly to an editor by e-mail, saving on
paper, stamps, and those annoying post office lines.

The ether buzzed with promises of future benefits for writers as
well.  E-books, we were told, were going to, at long last, level
the playing field for writers who didn't have the clout or
connections to get noticed by "big commercial publishers."  Since
e-books cost so much less to create and distribute, e-book
publishers would be able to afford to take on less profitable
(but no less worthy) authors.  At least one article confidently
predicted "the death of paper" by 2005.  E-book publishers
sprouted like weeds, and most got weeded out.

All this excitement ultimately led to the dot.com feeding frenzy
at the end of the 1990's -- a frenzy that was bound to bust.
When it did, it took down some wonderful sites along with it,
including Inkspot.  It was from the ashes of Inkspot that
Writing-World.com was born.

As we entered the new millenium, however, I think the excitement
was beginning to fade.  Instead of promises, we found ourselves
facing threats: Viruses, worms, and the ever-increasing tide of
spam.  Writing groups became embroiled in flame wars, and
sometimes perished.  For many, the convenience of being able to
order practically anything online became offset by fears of
identity theft and credit card fraud.  The tone of much of the
correspondence I received at this point was not of excitement but
of fear: People were afraid to sign up for a newsletter because
they thought it would open them up to more spam, and many
wouldn't even open an e-mail for fear that reading a message from
a stranger would infect their computer with a virus.

Writers who dreamed of achieving fame and fortune through e-books
discovered that the majority of readers still preferred to curl
up in a comfortable chair with a cup of coffee and a
perfect-bound chunk of paper.  I've lost track of the number of
companies that have promised to bring out the perfect e-reader,
or some form of "electronic paper."  Nor has it helped writers to
have those same old mega-publishers jump onto the e-book wagon --
hijacking it into yet another means to reap greater profits for
by publishing the same big-name writers and charging the same
fees.  (I did find it amusing to read an article in which
publishers were trying to rationalize high prices for e-books by
claiming that their greatest cost was ROYALTIES, when for decades
they've been telling authors that royalties have to stay low
because of the high cost of PRODUCTION.)

But beyond the issue of "fear" (viruses, fraud, identity theft),
"annoyance" (spam, virus hoaxes, popup ads) and "disillusionment"
(a dwindling electronic marketplace), I think writers have found
themselves facing another Internet-related burden: Overload.  I
believe there is a tendency for just about any technology to
begin as an opportunity -- and to end up as an obligation.  Take
the telephone: At first it offered a wonderful new way to
communicate with someone instantly, even if they were miles away.
But eventually it became something that one felt obligated to
answer, even if one was in the middle of dinner or a show or
whatever.  If your sister called to lament her woes for an hour,
you felt you had to listen -- even if you were an hour away from
deadline.  Worse, it became (like the Internet) a tool for
telemarketers, scammers and predators.

In the early days, I found it exciting to log on and find 30 or
40 e-mails in my inbox from writers and readers around the world.
But over time, the burden of answering that many e-mails every
day began to eclipse the excitement.  The fact that one could now
communicate with practically anyone in the world at the speed of
light now meant that one was considered OBLIGATED to do so -- and
people could get downright hostile if you didn't answer them in a
"reasonable" amount of time (i.e., five minutes ago).

We also began to suffer from "information overload." How many of
us are able to simply throw away magazines that we subscribe to,
without reading them?  Yet now we are faced with a hundred times
as much information those print publications provided. Could we
afford to ignore it?  If we didn't "keep up," would it jeopardize
our ability to compete in the marketplace?  It was nice to get
one or two high-quality e-mail newsletters each week; it became
overwhelming to get ten or twelve, many of them mediocre or
simply rehashing the same subjects (and markets).

Finally, I think we all have increasingly begun to suffer from
the plague of the 21st century: TOO MUCH TO DO.  I have yet to
talk to anyone who feels that they have fewer demands on their
time than they did five years ago.  And this, too, I believe is
related to the "opportunity becomes obligation" tendency of
technology, especially "time-saving" technology. There's the old
adage, "a penny saved is a penny earned."  But a minute saved
isn't a minute that we can put away into our personal
time-savings account.  It's a minute someone else wants from us.
The fact that we CAN do things at the speed of light means that
we are now EXPECTED to do things at the speed of light.  The fact
that we can accomplish ten tasks in the time it once took to
accomplish two doesn't mean that we have 80% more leisure time.
It means that we now have eight more tasks to accomplish.  Being
able to do things faster means having to do MORE.

For example, when most of my writing correspondence arrived via
the postman, handling that correspondence took about an hour a
week.  Today, handling e-mail correspondence can take an hour or
two a day.  In the old days I would have considered five letters
in a single day a "flood"; today, if I received that few e-mails,
I'd wonder if my ISP was down.

Yet, ironically, the e-mail flow to my inbox HAS decreased,
precisely because of that plague I mentioned.  Even though
Writing-World.com has more readers than ever before, I hear from
far fewer of them -- because all of you are just as busy as I am,
and a lot of you are probably a lot busier.  A couple of years
ago, a survey in Writing World would have attracted dozens of
responses; today, with 16,000 readers, we're lucky to get ten.
I've noticed far fewer inappropriate submissions; I suspect that
the would-be writers who haven't bothered to learn how to study
markets or write a query have become disillusioned by their lack
of success and dropped out of the game.  And the flood of spam
and viruses has definitely decreased, partly due to legislation
and partly due to efforts on the part of service providers to
develop better filtering and protection tools.

So, do we still love the Internet? I think we do. I certainly
do.  I know I couldn't run my business without it, and that's
exactly what most of our survey respondents said.  For example, I
got started working for a site/newsletter run by a publisher who
lived in Canada (and whom I never even met until after Inkspot
folded); today my newsletter is edited by a woman living in
England, whom I also have never met.  Perhaps it's no
coincidence that most of the respondents to this survey
lived outside the U.S., and pointed out that it really is thanks
to the Internet that they are able to sustain a truly
international writing career.

Even so, I suspect that most of us have lost some of that initial
excitement that we felt a decade ago.  We no longer join half a
dozen discussion groups; we no longer sign up for every free
newsletter we find; and we no longer feel compelled to write (or
answer) to send out a hundred e-mails a week.  But this is far
from a "bad thing."  It means that most of us are learning to
treat the Internet as a tool -- and to realize that for a tool to
be effective, we must control IT rather than allowing it to
control US.

Now if we could just do the same thing with our cellphones...


                                         -- Moira Allen, Editor

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               UPCOMING CONFERENCES AND EVENTS

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UPCOMING TELESEMINAR: Everything You Need To Know About
Self-Publishing, Tuesday, June 13 8 p.m. ET  Hosted by Gayle Trent
(recently profiled in Woman's Day magazine)
http://gayle24202.tripod.com/teleseminarsandclasses/ Also see the
affordable e-courses on novel and freelance writing!

DEADLY INK - Annual mystery conference for authors and fans,
short story contest, novel contest, retreats and classes. Deadly
Ink Press is looking for new authors.  Visit our  website at
http://www.deadlyink.com or email info"at"deadlyink.com

WRITERS - learn how to provide editors with exactly what they are
looking for. Even if you have no photographic experience, you can
boost your income by learning how to put together your own
dynamite photo essays. Join us in historic Philadelphia, June
22-25, for an intensive 3-day photography and travel writing
workshop. http://www.blairhoward.com/philly.html

     >>-----------------------------------------------------<<

WANT MORE WRITERS TO ATTEND YOUR EVENT?  If you'd like more
writers to know about your upcoming conference, seminar or other
event, why not put the word out where more writers will see it?
A listing in the Writing World newsletter or website will reach
thousands of writers -- and we're offering special discounted
rates for conferences and other events.  For details, visit
http://www.writing-world.com/admin1/adcontract2.shtml or contact
Moira Allen at editors"at"writing-world.com

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NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF WRITING
=================================================================

Book Industry Trends 2006 shows growth in publishing
----------------------------------------------------
Book Industry TRENDS 2006 estimates that total publishers' net
revenues have increased by just over 5.9 percent in 2005, to
reach $34.59 billion.  The survey, which this year was not
limited to traditional publishing houses, shows amongst other
things that sales in the juvenile trade category rose 9.6 percent
in 2005, and religious book sales increased by 8.1 percent. For
more information, visit:
http://www.bisg.org/publications/trends2006.html.

However, US Publishers are publishing fewer books
--------------------------------------------------
Bowker, the world's leading provider of bibliographic
information, has released statistics on U.S. book publishing
compiled from its Books In Print database. Based on preliminary
figures from U.S. publishers, Bowker projects that U.S. output in
2005 decreased by more than 18,000, to 172,000 new titles and
editions. This is the first decline since 1999, and only the 10th
downturn recorded in the last 50 years. It follows a record
increase of more than 19,000 new books in 2004. Great Britain,
long the world's per capita leader in the publication of new
books in any language, now replaces the U.S. as the publisher of
the most new books in English. 206,000 new books were published
in the U.K. in 2005, representing an increase of some 45,000
(28%) over 2004. For more information, visit:
http://www.bowker.com/press/bowker/2006_0509_bowker.htm

2005 was deadliest year for journalists
---------------------------------------
A report from Reporters Without Borders says 63 journalists were
killed in 2005 -- the highest death-toll for a decade. In
addition, five media assistants were killed worldwide and more
than 1,300 media workers attacked or threatened.  The report also
states that violence against journalists is now on the increase
in Bangladesh, the Philippines, Nigeria and Mexico and that such
violence often goes unpunished. For more information, visit:
http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=17084

Woodcock fund for struggling Canadian writers receives legacy
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Writers' Trust of Canada, a national charitable organization,
has received $1.87 million from the estate of literary giant
George Woodcock and his wife Ingeborg.  This money will be
distributed through its Woodcock Fund, which was established by
the Woodcocks in 1989 to offer financial assistance to writers in
financial difficulities. The Woodcock fund has already
distributed more than $420,000 to over a hundred writers since it
began. For more information visit: http://tinyurl.com/l3vdz

Arts Council claims Publishers 'neglect' ethnic minority writers
----------------------------------------------------------------
The British Arts Council is leading a campaign to get more black
and Asian poets published.  This follows a recent report that
showed that poetry presses failed to enter black or Asian writers
into the nominations for the Next Generation Poets List in 2004.
The report shows that 43% of black or Asian poets rate their
chances for publication as either 'poor' or' very poor.'  The
majority felt that poetry publishing is unsupportive of ethnic
minority talent and said that publishers found their work too
'culturally specific'.  Only seven percent thought racism was
preventing their work from being published. For more information
visit:  http://www.freelanceuk.com/news/1702.shtml

House Moves on Orphan Legislation
----------------------------------
On May 22, Congressman Lamar Smith introduced H.R. 5439: The
Orphan Works Act of 2006. This was as a direct result of a study
by the US Copyright Office in consultation with various industry
bodies. Congressman Smith's subcommittee has already given the
bill approval. According to the AAP, the proposed legislation
"provide(s) that if the user of a copyrighted work has performed
a reasonably diligent but ultimately unsuccessful search to
locate the copyright owner, and that owner later turns up and
sues for infringement, the user would be entitled to have the
benefit of limitations on the compensation and injunctive
remedies that the owner could obtain." For more information
visit: http://www.publicknowledge.org/node/388

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DO YOU WISH YOU COULD FIND THE BEST WRITING MARKETS? "The
Freelancer's Guide to Finding Writing Markets", by Gary McLaren,
isn't just a list of markets, but a guide to how to find those
markets, including databases, newsletters, market books,
directories and more.  Available through Writing-World.com at
http://www.writing-world.com/bookstore/index.shtml

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THE INQUIRING WRITER
=================================================================
                     by Dawn Copeman (DawnCopeman"at"Write-away.biz)

Last month Moira wondered if we were getting jaded by the
internet.  Well, some of us, it seems, are still enthralled with
it.  "I definitely use the internet more than I did a few years
ago, and the reason is I find it to be much more reliable now,"
writes Rasma Haidri Sjżvoll.

Similarly, Becky Mushko finds that the internet is a vital part
of her writing life: "I use it far more productively than I used
to. I submit my twice-monthly newspaper column via email because
it's time-saving for me and my editor.  I depend on the Internet
for information about writing. I use the Internet for research. I
correspond and do interviews via email. If I'm checking out an
unfamiliar publisher or a writing contest, I Google to see if any
bad reports exist."

Peggy Mitchell, a writer in her mid-70's, has this to say about
the internet: "As a writer isolated by health problems and having
no car, I can't physically attend writing groups in the city as I
used to 15 years ago. Communicating via the "net" allows me to
get mental stimulation from sending my writing out in to the
world and in getting feedback from fellow writers."

Lisa Oliver doesn't think she could work without the internet.
"As a writer who lives in rural New Zealand I still find the
Internet as important as it was when I started writing six years
ago. Living in a rural area means that I have very limited access
to decent libraries, and this combined with the very limited
freelance writing work in NZ itself has meant that the Internet
has quite literally opened up my world."

However, most of you it seems, are finely balanced between
loathing and loving the internet in equal measures.  Writers like
Raelene Hall note, "The Internet has made it possible for me to
establish a freelance writing career even though I live on an
isolated property in Western Australia. With the nearest town
214kms away and our city 1000kms down the road without the
Internet I doubt I would have achieved the success I have. At the
same time the Internet can be my biggest time waster and
procrastinator assistant."

Sue Fagalde Lick is of a similar opinion: "I still appreciate the
wonder of accessing instant information on the Internet. I love
the speed and the 24-hour access. It's an amazing tool. However,
it also constantly calls my attention away from my work. I keep
checking my e-mail when I should be writing, and I can't help
clicking the many interesting links. I subscribe to more
newsletters than I can read, so they either pile up or I waste
writing time to read them. I can reach the world at any time, but
the world can also reach me. To be honest, I am sometimes
grateful when the electricity fails."

Nancy Larson, an information specialist and reference librarian,
is particularly torn when it comes to the internet.  "Remember
"Garbage in, garbage out?"  Now, it's "Garbage in, gospel
out"--if it comes out of the computer or the Internet, it's
gospel. No one seems willing to turn on their brains and evaluate
the quality of information they receive." However, she does
appreciate being able to get accurate medical information for her
elderly patrons via the net and also being able to email family
in New Zealand. "So, on the one hand, I'm jaded by the Internet,
and yes, overwhelmed--but don't you dare take it away from me!"

The main problem for many, it seems, is that as the Internet as
grown and the number of writing sites has multiplied, the
information that can be found is not always worth reading. We get
quantity but not quality. Rob Bleckly notes: "In the end I had to
abandon most of the newsletters and email lists -- Writing World
excepted, the value for time-invested was just not there. So in
this sense, yes, I have become jaded with the Internet. On the
other hand I use it more and more for research."

"I have to say I am a bit jaded by the Internet." writes Sean
McLachlan. "I rarely surf for new sites anymore, unless it's part
of my research, and while I'm a member of several writing-related
news groups, I tend to skim them as the majority of people on
them are rather amateurish. That said, the Internet is vital to
my writing career. I live in Spain, and all my publishers are
either in the U.S. or U.K. I simply couldn't make a living if I
couldn't cyber commute.  I use the Internet about as much as I
did a few years ago, but my use is more work-related and
efficient. I don't spend much time reading stuff that won't help
my career."

For others, it is the distraction, the busy-work that isn't
really work, that is the problem with the Internet. Elaine
Masters:  "It's a love/hate relationship, this Internet thing.  I
still only subscribe to two regular newsletters, but I do
interact with them on a frequent basis, glean advice, and click
on many suggested links.  For researching, I'm still in awe of
the efficiency, speed, and breadth of what a few words keyed into
Google will bring. That part of the Internet, I love. And e-mail.
I'm more in touch with more people now than ever in the past."

Maybe we need to just be a bit more judicious in how we use the
"net"? Perhaps we can all learn from Roberta Beach Jacobsen. "To
stay sane once you turn on your computer each morning, it's
important for every writer to set limits -- on time spent on
e-mails and on how many groups and newsletters make sense. It's
easy to over indulge and waste time."

Speaking personally, I know I couldn't work without the internet.
For a start, I edit this newsletter via email. For me, it is the
best invention ever. (Well, after the printing press!) But I
think we as writers do need to evaluate how and why we use the
web to ensure we get the most out of it.

Now, whilst I'm roughly on the topic of knowledge, here's next
month's question for you. Did you know that in the UK there are
now 85 universities offering postgraduate creative writing
courses, compared to fewer than ten a decade ago?  It seems that
writing is suddenly the sexiest course on the planet, with people
believing that enrolling on such a course will turn them into the
next J K Rowling.  So what I want to know is this:  Have you
taken a writing course of any kind? College based, MFA, distance
learning, online?  If so, what effect, if any, did it have on
your career? Did it give you the break you needed? Or are you a
self-taught writer? Can people be taught to write, or is it
something you either have or don't have?

Email your responses to DawnCopeman"at"Write-Away.biz with the
subject line "Writing Courses". Till next time! -- Dawn

For advice on how to get the most out of the Internet visit:
	http://www.writing-world.com/basics/index.shtml

  >>-----------------------------------------------------<<

Dawn Copeman is a freelance writer based in England.  She is the
editor of http://www.newbie-writers.com a site for new and
aspiring writers as well as a contributing editor and columnist
at http://www.timetravel-britain.com. Visit her website at
http://www.write-away.biz

Copyright (c) 2006 by Dawn Copeman

*****************************************************************

GET PUBLISHED IN 2006! Let Patricia Fry guide you successfully
through the publishing maze. The Right Way to Write, Publish and
Sell Your Book, 328 pages, $19.95.
http://www.matilijapress.com/rightway.html

*****************************************************************

WHY GOING TO A WRITERS' CONFERENCE PAYS OFF
=================================================================
                                                  by Susan Denney

Going to my first writers' conference was an act of faith.  I was
just starting to make some freelance sales when the members of my
writers' group encouraged me to join them at a conference a few
hundred miles away.  The expense didn't seem justified to me.
The cost was far more than I had earned through writing that
year. But they convinced me at last and it proved to be a great
investment.  The benefits of a writers' conference are there for
anyone who has a desire to be a better writer.  Here are ten
strong reasons why I think you should go to at least one writers'
conference every year. I'll even add in an eleventh bonus reason
which is a real winner.

1. You will meet other writers. I know that sounds obvious, but
where else can you meet hundreds of people who are at varying
stages in their writing careers? Wherever you are on the road to
success, you will meet others who have been there before and who
are ready to help you.  I find that writers as a group are very
supportive.  If you make an effort to say hello and to sit at
tables with people you don't know, it is easy to meet others who
can help you take the next step in your writing.

2. You will find lots of practical information you can put to
immediate use. You might attend a seminar on how to organize your
paperwork or how to format a manuscript or how to send a query to
an editor or how to do your taxes. Whether you are a newbie or a
pro, you will definitely get some nuts and bolts knowledge that
you can use to make your writing pay off better.

3. You will learn something. Part of the reason you write is that
you love reading and gaining knowledge. You might have even liked
English class.  Human beings are hardwired to get excited about
learning new things and writers' conferences are always full of
ideas and insights about the craft. Sessions can be just as
interesting as college classes.  The only difference is that
there are no tests.

4. You will get energized. There's nothing more infectious than a
bunch of people all excited about the same thing. Remember those
pep rallies from high school? The goal of those rallies was to
inspire you and your classmates with a desire to see their team
win. Being a successful writer is a far more important goal. When
you're gathered together with hundreds of other writers who are
all passionate about writing, you'll get the desire to write more
or better than you ever have before.

5. You might win something. If the conference includes a writing
contest, you should definitely enter.  Whether you win or lose,
you will still be doing some serious writing before you go and
you will make sure it is your very best. With any luck, you will
get a helpful critique which will be helpful to you. You may even
take home a check. Plus, winning a prize at a contest looks great
in a query letter when you send that manuscript out to an agent
or editor.

6. You will learn more about different genres. A friend entered a
writers' conference contest and tried her hand at confession
writing. I don't think she would have ever thought of attempting
that particular kind of writing if she hadn't planned on entering
the contest. While she was a bit disappointed that she didn't
win, she sold the story!  At that same conference, she attended a
session on creative nonfiction.  Using the information she
learned there, she made yet another sale.

7. You may find a new market for your work. Conferences attract
all kinds of writers. Some of them will write for markets that
you haven't considered yet. They might know of a magazine
which uses the kinds of things you write.  They may know of a
publisher who is looking for a book like yours.

8. You will improve your professional effectiveness.
Schoolteachers, doctors, engineers and lawyers all have to attend
a certain number of continuing education courses every year.
Writers' conferences are an excellent way to for you to continue
your education and improve your knowledge about your craft. If
you are serious about your writing, attending a conference will
prove that you are committed to your chosen profession.

9. You will be inspired. If you go with an ear to listen, there
will be speakers who seem to be talking directly to you. Some
have overcome great obstacles in order to succeed. It's the rare
writer who hasn't gotten a rejection letter or faced difficulties
or hardships.  Editors and agents also speak at writers'
conferences.  They may be able to give you hope or encouragement
or that little push that you need. Either way, you will find the
courage to keep on writing.

10. You will meet editors and agents. This is the ultimate
payoff: editors and agents take time out of their busy lives to
attend writers' conferences because they are looking for people
like you who have a book or an idea that will make money for
them.  Writers really do find agents and editors this way. At
many conferences, you can sign up for an appointment and find
yourself face to face with a living, breathing editor or agent
who wants to hear about your work.  This is a thousand times
better than sending out a manuscript that will almost certainly
land at the bottom of a slush pile. [Editor's Note: In our next
issue, we'll feature an article on how to pitch your manuscript
at a writer's conference.]

Still not sure you should go to a conference? Well, here's my
bonus reason.

11. You will be able to write off the trip and entry fees on your
income tax as a business expense. Uncle Sam will give you a tax
break for attending this conference even if you haven't started
making money yet. And that conference may get you so fired up
about your writing that making money will be no problem!

I hope you're convinced. I have certainly convinced myself.  I
can't wait until next year's conference!

-----------------------------------------------------<<

Susan Denney is a regular contributor to the newsletter Writing
for DOLLARS! and has been published in Byline, The Friend and
The Ensign. She is currently writing online continuing education
classes for iteACtexas, a company that specializes in alternative
certification and continuing education for teachers in Texas. Her
next goal is to publish a novel. http://www.susandenney.com

Copyright (c) 2006 by Susan Denney

For advice on how networking can help your career, visit
	http://www.writing-world.com/freelance/network.shtml
*****************************************************************

ALLBOOKS REVIEWS: professional book reviews and author promotion
at very reasonable fees. Listed in 101 Best Websites for Writers.
Allbooks Reviews sell books! We review POD as well as traditional
titles. Visit:   http://www.allbooksreviews.com

*****************************************************************

THE WRITE SITES
=================================================================

FREELANCEWRITING.COM: NEWSLETTERS
---------------------------------
You can browse 50 separate e-mail newsletters published by a variety
of writing sites in this single database.  (Some, however, are "free"
teasers designed to promote a subscription-based newsletter.)
http://www.freelancewriting.com/content/browse-newsletters-129-1.html

PRACTICING-WRITER.COM
---------------------
A free newsletter by Erika Dreifus that lists lots of contests.
       http://www.practicing-writer.com

LOUSYWRITER.COM
---------------
Stop Writing Junk! Visit this free resource to improve your
writing skills. Set up by Brian Konradt, it offers lessons in
grammar as well as how to write ad copy, blog copy, and resumes.
	http://www.lousywriter.com/

HARD TO FIND 800 NUMBERS
------------------------
Amazon, eBay, PayPal, Yahoo, Microsoft.
    http://www.hardtofind800numbers.com/

PROMOTE YOUR POETRY...
----------------------
...with a one-hour interview on the weekly internet radio talk
show "Practical Poetry."
    http://www.MichelleAileneTrue.com/PracticalPoetry.html

SELF PUBLISHING CHAT ROOM.
--------------------------
A great place for people to come together and share experiences
and advice!
	http://www.selfpublishingchat.com

LIFETIME LITERACY
-----------------
Publishers, writers and readers can donate unwanted books to this
organization to help promote literacy.
    http://www.LifetimeLiteracy.org/

****************************************************************

NEW AND ESTABLISHED MARKETS FOR YOUR WRITING. Up-to-date
SUBMISSION Guidelines/Leads for poetry, short prose, and book
projects. You'll receive your FREE report TODAY via email
NEWSFLASH. Call toll-free (866) 405-3003 or Click Here
http://www.wrelief.com Absolutely no subscription or purchase
necessary. We'll share our know-how with you. In our 12th Year!

*****************************************************************

THE WRITING DESK
=================================================================
                                                  by Moira Allen


Q: Are Fillers Really the Best Way to "Break In"?
-------------------------------------------------

I read many articles about how useful (and sometimes how easy) it
is to break into the freelance market by doing fillers. It's
suggested that these are the gateway to building a rapport with
an editor and it makes great sense. Trouble is, none of the
articles tell us folks one important how-to: since none of the
writers' guidelines I've come across even mention fillers, do I
dare just do a filler that would fit a particular publication and
send it in? The articles all say queries aren't necessary for
fillers and that editors are chomping at the bit for these
fillers, but is it that simple?

A: I've read those articles too, and frankly, as an editor, I'm a
bit baffled. I think they are a holdover from a much older day,
when larger magazines did in fact use "fillers" to fill up any
leftover space they might have at the end of an article. I can
remember seeing "fillers" in magazines like McCall's, back in the
1960's and 70's. In those days, publishers tended to put the
pictures and color ads in the "front" of the book, and articles
were continued in the black and white text sections in the back.
Occasionally an article would run a bit short of the column, and
you'd find a short filler there.

Today, that doesn't seem to happen, for two reasons. One
is that it's much easier to plan to fill your space precisely
with your text. Second, there are always various public service
ads that you can pop into
an empty space. So I hardly ever see fillers being
used and as you say, I don't see magazines asking for them.

Where short pieces that might be described as "fillers" are
generally used today is in publications that have a sort of
"news" or "odds and ends" section toward the front of the
magazine. This is where items that are interesting but too short
to stand as a feature article generally wind up. And this can be
a good place to get a small piece published. But most editors
don't have a shortage of items to put here.

I may be completely wrong about this, but I'm noticing the same
thing you are; magazines don't seem to be asking for fillers. So
I'd recommend skipping the fillers and working on feature articles.

READ MORE QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ON THE WEB:
	Where Can a Freelancer Find Health Insurance?
	Why Don't You See More Published Fan Fiction?
	What is an "Exclusive" Right?
	Do You Need Permission to Write About People in Your Life?
	    http://www.writing-world.com/desk/desk06.shtml

     >>-----------------------------------------------------<<

Moira Allen has been writing and editing professionally for more
than 20 years, and has written several books on writing,
including "Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer" and "The
Writer's Guide to Queries, Pitches and Proposals."  Her most
recent book is "How to Write for Magazines," now available at
http://www.writing-world.com/bookstore/index.shtml.  Read a sample
chapter at http://www.writing-world.com/admin1/magsample.pdf

Copyright (c) 2006 by Moira Allen

*****************************************************************

        YOUR BOOK CAN NOW BE AVAILABLE AS AN AUDIO BOOK
     Spoken Books Publishing is now accepting submissions
     for inclusion in their audio book publishing program.
      For a complete explanation of how the program works
           visit http://www.spokenbookspublishing.com

*****************************************************************

THE BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO... Beating Writer's Block
=================================================================
                                                  by Dawn Copeman

The only way to be a writer is to write. Now, you don't
necessarily need to write every day, but you do need to write
regularly and to strive to constantly improve upon your writing
style -- to make it tighter, more concise, to make it flow more
easily.

But what if you're finding it hard to find topics to write about?
What if every time you sit down to write, your mind goes blank?
What if you've developed the dreaded Writers' Block? Then do as
it says on my screensaver, and "just write something!"

It really doesn't matter what you write; the important thing is
to start writing something and not to feel discouraged. All of
us, at some time, find it difficult to get started. So here are
some tips to help you beat the blank page and develop your
writing skills at the same time.

To read the rest of this column go to:
	http://www.writing-world.com/dawn/dawn05.shtml

*****************************************************************

WHAT'S NEW AT WRITING-WORLD.COM
=================================================================

June COLUMNS:
--------------
The Writing Desk, by Moira Allen
	http://www.writing-world.com/desk/desk06.shtml

The Beginner's Guide to... Beating Writer's Block, by Dawn Copeman
	http://www.writing-world.com/dawn/dawn05.shtml

NEW ARTICLES:
-------------
Travel Writing that Pays, by Kayleen Reusser
	http://www.writing-world.com/freelance/reusser.shtml

When the Guidelines Say "7-12": The Ages and Stages of Children's
Literature, by Eugie Foster
	http://www.writing-world.com/children/stages.shtml


*****************************************************************
RECOMMENDED WRITING CLASSES: Freelancing for Newspapers, by
Sue Fagalde Lick.  8 weeks, $100; enroll at any time!
    http://www.writing-world.com/classes/newspapers.shtml
	(This class is recommended by Writing-World.com)
*****************************************************************
RECOMMENDED WRITING CLASSES: Fundamentals of Fiction, by Marg
Gilks. 8 weeks, $150; enroll at any time!
    http://www.writing-world.com/classes/fiction.shtml
	(This class is recommended by Writing-World.com)
*****************************************************************

WRITING CONTESTS
=================================================================
This section lists contests that charge no entry fees. Unless
otherwise indicated, competitions are open to all adult writers.
For more contests, check our contests database.
      http://www.writing-world.com/contests/index.shtml


DELACORTE DELL YEARLING CONTEST FOR A FIRST MIDDLE-GRADE NOVEL
--------------------------------------------------------------
DEADLINE: June 30, 2006
GENRE: Middle grade children's novel
OPEN TO: US and Canadian writers who have not previously
published a novel for middle-grade readers
LENGTH: 96-160 manuscript pages
THEME: Contemporary or historical fiction set in North America,
for readers age 9-12.
PRIZE: $1,500 in cash and a $7,500 advance against royalties,
plus book contract
ADDRESS: Delacorte Dell Yearling Contest, Random House, Inc.,
1745 Broadway, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10019
URL: http://www.randomhouse.com/kids/writingcontests/


BRITISH CZECH AND SLOVAK ASSOCIATION WRITING CONTEST
----------------------------------------------------
DEADLINE: June 30, 2006
GENRE:  Fiction and nonfiction
THEME: 	Fact or fiction; 1,500 to 2,000-word pieces of
original writing in English on the links between Britain and the
Czech/Slovak Republics, or describing society in transition in
the Republics since 1989. Topics can include history,politics,
the sciences, economics, the arts or literature.
PRIZE: £300
URL: http://www.bcsa.co.uk/specials.html#competitions
EMAIL:  prize"at"bcsa.co.uk.


HOT SUMMER SOMETHING FICTION CONTEST
------------------------------------
DEADLINE: July 1, 2006
GENRE: Fiction
THEME: It's hot. It's strange. What is it? I don't know, but
you better -- it's your story! Using any definition or concept of
hot (but keeping it to a PG rating, please), write a 1,001 to
5,000 word speculative fiction tale.
PRIZE: $75, $50, $25, plus publication on website
URL: http://www.fromtheasylum.com
EMAIL: fta"at"fromtheasylum.com


WE'RE LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD RENEGADES...
-----------------------------------------
DEADLINE: July 1, 2006
GENRE: Nonfiction
THEME:  Are you a rule-breaking renegade freelance writer? Then
strut your stuff by entering The Renegade Writer "Ultimate
Renegade" Contest!
OPEN TO: All
PRIZE: 	$500
URL: http://www.marionstreetpress.com
EMAIL: edavis"at"marionstreetpress.com.


MICHIGAN LITERARY FICTION AWARDS: NOVEL/SHORT FICTION COLLECTION
----------------------------------------------------------------
DEADLINE: July 1, 2006
GENRE: Two separate contests: Novel length fiction, and short
fiction collection
OPEN TO: Entrants must have previously published at least one
literary novel or story collection in English
THEME: Literary  Fiction.  Ultimately, it will be up to the
judges to determine what is, and what is not "literary," but it's
safe to say that genre fiction, such as mystery, science fiction,
romance, children's fiction etc., won't qualify. We're unlikely
to be able to publish anything under 100 pages, but otherwise
there are no length limitations."
PRIZE: $1000 plus publication by The University of Michigan Press
URL: http://www.press.umich.edu/fiction/


RICHARD J. MARGOLIS AWARD
-------------------------
DEADLINE: July 1, 2006
GENRE: Journalism/Essay
LENGTH: Two examples of the writer's work, published or
unpublished, 30 pages maximum
THEME: Given annually to a promising new journalist or essayist
whose work combines warmth, humor, wisdom and concern with social
justice.
PRIZE: $5,000, plus 1-month residency at the Blue Mountain
Center, a writers and artists colony in the Adirondacks in Blue
Mountain Lake, NY
ADDRESS: Richard J. Margolis Award, c/o Margolis & Associates
LLP, 137 Newbury Street, 2nd Floor, Boston, MA 02116
URL: http://www.margolis.com/award/index.html
EMAIL: harry"at"margolis.com (no e-mail entries)


*****************************************************************

New Listings on THE AUTHOR'S BOOKSHELF:
---------------------------------------

THE RUNE PRIMER, by Sweyn Plowright


Find these and more great books at
      http://www.writing-world.com/books/index.shtml

Have you just had a book published?  If so, let our readers know:
just click on the link below to list your book.
      http://www.writing-world.com/books/listyours.shtml

*****************************************************************

ADVERTISE in WRITING WORLD or on WRITING-WORLD.COM!  For details
on how to reach 60,000 writers a month with your product, service
or book title, visit
      http://www.writing-world.com/admin1/adrates.shtml

****************************************************************

Writing World is a publication of Writing-World.com
http://www.writing-world.com

Editor/Publisher: MOIRA ALLEN (writing-world"at"cox.net)
Newsletter Managing Editor:
DAWN COPEMAN (DawnCopeman"at"write-away.biz)

Copyright 2006 Moira Allen
Individual articles copyrighted by their authors.

Back issues archived at
http://www.writing-world.com/newsletter/index.shtml

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Copyright © 2017 by Moira Allen. All rights reserved.
All materials on this site are the property of their authors
and may not be reprinted without the author's written permission,
unless otherwise indicated.
For more information please contact Moira Allen, Editor