Tag Archives: Guest Writers

INKSPILL Day 1 Meet Our Guest Writers

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INKSPILL 2015

Meet our Guest Writers for 2015, who have generously given their time for free to give us insights into their writing lives.

GUEST David Calcutt

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David Calcutt is a playwright, poet and novelist. He has written many plays for the professional stage, community and youth theatre, as well as original plays and adaptations for BBC Radios 3 and 4. Several of his plays for young people are published by Oxford University Press, including “The Terrible Fate of Humpty Dumpty”, “Lady Macbeth”, “Beowulf” and “Dracula”.

He also has three novel for young people published by Oxford University Press, and one by Barefoot Books, “Robin Hood”. His poetry appears widely in both print and online magazine, and he has published three pamphlets of poetry: “Outlaws” by Iron Press, and “Road Kill” and “Through the Woods” by Fairacre Press.

David has worked as a resident writer in care homes, St. Giles Hospice and a community garden and has also both written and directed several large-scale community plays. His most recent work for theatre is the one-man play, “The Life and Times of the Tat Man” which is currently still on tour with Regional Voice Theatre.

GUEST Alison May

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Alison is a novelist, short story writer, blogger who grew up in North Yorkshire, and now lives in Worcester. She worked as a waitress, a shop assistant, a learning adviser, an advice centre manager, a freelance trainer, and now a maker-upper of stories, and novel-writing tutor.

She won the Romantic Novelists Association’s Elizabeth Goudge trophy in 2012, and her short stories have been published by Harlequin, Choc Lit and Black Pear Press.

 

GUEST Daniel Sluman

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Sonia Hendy-Isaac
© 2014

Daniel Sluman is a poet who was born in Oxford, in 1986. He started writing poetry when he embarked on a BA in English Literature and Creative Writing in 2008. Since then he has been published widely in UK based print journals and e-zines. His poems have appeared widely in journals such as Cadaverine, Popshot, Shit Creek Review, and Under the Radar.

He received an MA in Creative & Critical Writing from the University of Gloucestershire in 2012 and his debut full-length collection, Absence has a weight of its own, was published in 2012. His second collection, ‘the terrible’, will be published Autumn/Winter 2015, also with Nine Arches Press.

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BOOKS BY ALL OUR GUEST WRITERS ARE AVAILABLE IN THE INKSPILL SHOP – OPENING SOON

INKSPILL – 2015 Guest Writers Revealed

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Later today the INKSPILL programme will be revealed, giving participants chance to see what is on offer and of interest to them over the this weekend (24/25th October).

There will be more information released on our Guests and their books, links will be available for you to explore and buy tomorrow.

GUEST

David Calcutt

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alison may author

Alison May

Daniel Sluman

Sonia Hendy-Isaac © 2014

Sonia Hendy-Isaac
© 2014

THE AWF BOOKSHOP is NOW OPEN CC bookshop-window Garry Knight

https://awritersfountain.wordpress.com/2015/10/24/inkspill-shop/

INKSPILL 2015 COMING SOON – SAVE THE DATE

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INKSPILL 15

24th – 25th October

 

For the 3rd year running AWF is hosting INKSPILL, a free online writing retreat. Come and join us and our Guest Writers for a weekend of writing and motivation.

There is NO SIGN UP, NO FEE.

Just read the posts, share links to your work, comment and LIKE the posts.

AWF offers this retreat to you for FREE, in return all we ask is you LIKE, reblog or share our blog posts.

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We have several Guest Writers this year – to be announced soon!

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INKSPILL What We Get From Writing – Guest Writer William Gallagher

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Blank screen William G Our final article from William Gallagher today is a great read and also a thought-provoking title. Let us know what writing does for you, what do you get from writing? Thanks William for being part of the 2nd INKSPILL Writing Retreat.

©2014 Lee Allen Photography

©2014 Lee Allen Photography

 

 

What we get from writing

Hand on heart, this is a tough one. I was very flattered that Nina Lewis asked me to talk to you for this Inkspill Writing Retreat but I was aware that my first thoughts to talk to you about were all about things that I do constantly. Things I know and care about and practice. I think the point of a writing retreat is to stretch you and I feel I ought to be stretched too.

This is me stretching. Im not sure how much value that has for you, it feels like Im doing calisthenics and youre waiting there in your smart leotard waiting for me to get off the mat. Youll be waiting a while. Im very unfit.

And I dont know what I get from writing.

I know that if you or I had any sense at all, we would have normal jobs and proper careers and we might even find a way to make that not feel ditchwater-dull and boring. I know that when we do have to juggle those normal jobs with a writing life, we are split between having to deep-mine our selves and our very souls on our own and then bound off into social occasions with colleagues. Colleagues who we work with but who probably dont get writing.

I was at a thing recently where some smart and charming writers were talking about why they write and a fella in the audience told them that it was because they wanted to make a bestseller. They wanted to make money. It took the speakers a beat to find a way to politely say no, thats not it at all.

Bestsellers are great and the idea that I can reach out not only to you but to oodles of people is simultaneously exciting and terrifying. I prefer it when its just us, but if oodles of others come, well, you put the kettle on. Ill get the extra biscuits.

It is possible to make a living from writing and I do, but the aim and what I think I actually get from this life is the opportunity to write better. Paying the mortgage and feeding myself is important, but the longer I can do that, the more I can do that, the greater my chance of becoming the writer I long to be.

So what I get from writing is writing. I feel Im short-changing you there. I live for the moments and it is only moments when the world is forgotten and I am in my writing, I am working at my best and hopefully making that best become better.

There are only two things that improve my writing and the biggest one is time. Making more time to write and then spending that time writing, its crucial.

But the other is using writing to head out into unsafe waters. I interviewed a poet the other day and as delightful as she was, she also goaded and challenged me into writing a poem. It was dreadful. But the experience of writing in a new area, reaching for something new in me, that was electrifying.

So theres the exercise. I am okay with writing you this personal blog chiefly because its you and youve got that kind of face, I feel I can tell you anything. But let me turn it into a writing exercise: I need to feel Im giving you something practical that you can actually use. And I know this is practical, I know you can use this: write something new.

Really new. If youre a poet, write a short story. If youre a novelist, write a radio play. Go somewhere new in topic and in form.

There is nothing else that can stretch you like writing in new directions and that stretching, thats it, thats what I get from writing.

William

Buy Books By William Gallagher on Amazon inkspill-pink2014

 

INKSPILL – Writing Doctor Who – Guest Writer William Gallagher

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©2014 Lee Allen Photography

©2014 Lee Allen Photography

Writing Doctor Who

Do be careful what you wish for: it can be bloody hard work. I write Doctor Who radio dramas for Big Finish and you cant just swan in and cook this stuff up. Doctor Who has to be inside you: I dont believe you can write for a show or a book range or a magazine if you dont already read it and love it. Plus, the producers at Big Finish do know and love Doctor Who, you have to step up to their level in the quality of your writing and its not easy.

Still, I hope that I will continue to write them forever. That is partly because I was a Doctor Who fan growing up and it never leaves you, especially not when the TV show is back and is capable of such great drama but also because it is radio drama and also because it stretches me tremendously.

Whatever type of writing you do, have a think about radio drama. I dont mean that you should definitely take it up, Ive got enough competition without you coming along and blowing me out of the water, but think about the form. I love radio drama because I feel its very intimate and personal, plus it is life-support dependent upon dialogue.

I am a dialogue man. Ive a friend who insists dialogue is the nice tasty little extra that you add at the end of a story and Im surprised were still friends. If I dont believe what your characters are saying, I dont believe them and I dont care about them. Let them be exterminated, so what?

Radio focuses you on dialogue like nothing else. Its exciting creating an entire new world, both metaphorically in your writing and pretty literally in that this is Doctor Who and youre making up a planet. But you have to convey that its, I dont know, a desert planet with oases of Apple Stores and a great big, green, smelly monster. You could have the Doctor step out of the TARDIS and say Oh, its Theta Beta Five, the famous desert planet – oh, no! A Smellosaurus! Quick, lets buy an iPad.

But nobody would be listening any more.

Ive tried recently to explain why I love scriptwriting above all things and at first I thought it came down to this. You have to conjure characters, a story, a world and all the drama using only what people say. (Plus a few sound effects. Do listen to a Big Finish Doctor Who some time: the sound design is simply a marvel.)

But actually, Ive come to realise that its much harder than that. And much more satisfying.

You cant say its a desert planet. You cant have villains saying what their dastardly plan is.

Russell T Davies, who with Julie Gardner brought Doctor Who back to TV in 2005, wrote once about a huge problem he had when moving on from writing soaps to writing drama. Im paraphrasing but broadly what he said was: In soaps, everybody says what they mean. In drama, they dont even know what they mean.

Thats a Damascus-level thought for me. I love and adore scriptwriting not because youre telling stories using only what people say, youre telling them only using what people do not.

Try it. Write me a scene with two characters and only dialogue, no settings, no description. One character wants something from the other and for some reason, that you have to think of he or she cannot tell that other person.

William

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Doctor Who Radio Dramas and other books by William Gallagher on Amazon

 

 

 

 

One Day Away! INKSPILL 2014

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I am sooooooooo excited now! Like a child on Christmas Eve! This year’s writing retreat is going to be even better than the first event I ran last year.

The initial idea came when I found out about Iyanla_Vanzant’s Wonder Woman Weekend.

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I couldn’t afford to go, although it would have been a great event to attend, I decided I could facilitate my own special weekend in place of this and Inkspill was born.

This year, you not only have me but also three very special Guest Writers who have prepared all sorts for you to enjoy and DO! Yes INKSPILL is your chance to write and we hope that you will accept the challenge and join us over the weekend.

Thanks again to William Gallagher, Charlie Jordan and Heather Wastie, who all accepted my invitation in February to be part of this year’s INKSPILL Writing Retreat.

©2014 Lee Allen Photography charlie jordanHeather Wastie headshot

© Lee Allen Photography

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For those of you who simply can’t wait until tomorrow here are some links to INKSPILL 2013: Go play!

How to Write Short Stories

Getting Organised How to be a Productive Writer

Writing Comedy

Ideas for Writing Everyday

And much more – use the menu TABS at the bottom of the Blog – Find INKSPILL and then click 25th October 2013 on the sidebar calendar to begin!

Here Comes INKSPILL 2014

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For the 2nd year we are offering a FREE Online Writing Retreat at the end of October, 25th & 26th.

Please comment to register interest, it was helpful and fun for many writers who participated last year and some of the TOP POSTS each month come from INKSPILL 2013.

This year I also have some exceptional Guest Writers lined up for you all and it may be the final time we can offer this retreat as 100% FREE. Each year we cover different aspects of writing and also add a selection of Free-writing and observational activities of the workshop variety.

You can participate in real time (GMT) and follow the whole process over the weekend or just dip in and out of posts. You can link back to your own blogs if you think some of your followers may be interested and people can join in at any point over the weekend.

SO SAVE THE DATE – 25th/26th OCTOBER and come and join the fun.

Leave a comment or a LIKE if you feel you may be interested. This is by no means a commitment on your behalf, just gives me some idea of preparation.

INKSPILL 2014 will be posting requests soon.

Have a think: if there is a gap in your knowledge, something confusing you, a direction needed? You can ask us to look into it – after all it is YOUR retreat!

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25th & 26th OCTOBER 2014