Thu 21 November 2019
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Five tips for Young Writers: The Information
The NAWE Young Writers' Coordinator shares his experiences of the writing industry

I knew nothing when I started out. Most people don't. So I wouldn't feel too put off if you're  unsure about how to get a foothold in the writing industry.

Some of the most useful resources are just a click away.

1. Guardian Books

The Guardian Review is a handsome supplement that makes up the Saturday edition of the newspaper.

Most of the content appears online at Guardian Books. I find the Guardian the most accessible and authoritative commentary on writing and the industry around. Aside from book reviews, there's interesting features, profiles, interviews, podcasts and lots more.

Reading book reviews can also help you gain an insight into the critical mood and help you see where a writer may have made mistakes or got something right.


2. The Bookseller

The Bookseller is a newspaper about the book business. It is a trusted source of news for those working in the industry and is generally most useful for publishers, agents, distributors and booksellers.

But even if you're a writer, knowing about the industry you're working in is crucial to succeeding. I find The Bookseller particularly effective at reporting the hard facts in the migration toward digital publishing.


3. Guardian Publishing

Much like Guardian Books, Guardian Publishing brings news and commentrary about the business end of the writing industry.


4. The Paris Review

According to the history of The Paris Review, the journal began with a simple editorial mission: “Dear reader,” William Styron wrote in a letter in the inaugural issue, “The Paris Review hopes to emphasize creative work—fiction and poetry—not to the exclusion of criticism, but with the aim in mind of merely removing criticism from the dominating place it holds in most literary magazines and putting it pretty much where it belongs, i.e., somewhere near the back of the book. I think The Paris Review should welcome these people into its pages: the good writers and good poets, the non-drumbeaters and non-axe-grinders. So long as they're good.”

The Paris Review offers in depth interviews with writers about their craft. It can't teach you how to write, but can provide insight and consolation.


5. The Arts Council

Arts Council England, like many other Arts Councils, offers a mailing list service and carries news on their website.

There are two lists – one for Jobs and one for News. The Jobs includes calls for submissions and non-paid positions and placements. The News is a broad range of goings on in the sector.

You can also sign up and send news in for consideration. If your news item gets on the list, you can quickly spread information.


So there's five things I found useful. Feel free to comment and add your own. The next "five tips" will be on Getting Published...


Wes Brown is a writer and NAWE Young Writers' Coordinator.


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