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This Week 22nd May 2017
Category: Site News
Tags: writers abroad site news online magazine

This is a very important week for Writers Abroad as Issue 6 of our online magazine will be published on May 26th. It is full of short stories, flash fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and even a prize-awarding quiz so there should be something for everyone to enjoy.

Jo has also come up with some brilliant suggestions for a new look for this site. All should be revealed before the end of the week!

Bieke has written an interesting blog on how her writing has grown from writing privately in a diary, to writing poetry and finally to sharing her writing with fellow writers. She leaves us with some interesting questions to ask ourselves; about how to support each other better as members of WA, bearing in mind how we all write in different genres. It will be interesting to read the comments.

On the bragging stool we have Crilly, Chris, Sue and Angela – all of whom have been longlisted in Ad Hoc fiction.  And Lesley’s Nifty Nib-Nibbling Nonsensical Narrative Writing Challenge Volume 1 will be published on Amazon on 3rd June. Lesley also shared a ‘joyful moment’ with us when she received a flattering comment on the publication of her 81-word story ‘Tycoon Tommy’. Well done all.

There are also two members with secrets they cannot yet divulge online. Most intriguing so hopefully that will something to celebrate next week. Can’t wait!

Laura will be supplying the Monday Muse this week, that is if she has time as I heard a rumour that she’s moving – not just house, but countries.

Have a good writing week and keep the words flowing.

Growing as a writer Tags: #betareaders #genre #writinglife


The first time ever I wrote in a diary, I became aware of how the act of putting one’s thoughts on paper has a healing power all of its own. I didn’t grow up wanting to be a writer but I have always written. I was seventeen when a teacher gave us an assignment to write a poem and he praised my poem and said, “You should write.” It was then that the thought took hold that I could be a writer. Then his assignment was to write a short story. I bombed dreadfully because I am not a natural born story teller and there went my dream. It’s good poems kept pouring out of me, regardless, because I can say that my life would not have been as rich if it weren’t for my insatiable need to write.

It could be that my poor sense of executive power at the administrative side of the job has kept me from being as “successful” as I sometimes think I should be or if it is my need to run to the rescue whenever a loved one is in need. In any case, something has kept me from sweeping everything aside and only serve the cruel tyrant that writing can be. Life interfered a lot and the art of not letting it is a good thing if you really want to make a go of it in the writing world. Or is it?

As I ponder all this, I have come to the conclusion that the writer I keep evolving into has a lot to do with my particular quirks. I have come to understand how my personal growth and my writing are very much intertwined. One feeds the other. This has been a revelation to me because when I was young, I believed writing to be a solitary endeavour and a writer one who would sit on an island far from the hustle and bustle of life. But now I know better. I can retreat to my island but I need to also take myself off it and delight in sharing my life, my writing.

In this last incarnation of my writing life, sharing my writing with fellow writers, getting feedback and giving feedback is a process that has helped me grow as a writer, and as a person. When I heard of Writers Abroad and then was taken into its folds, I was delighted. Canadian literature, or CanLit as it is called, is very much the property of a certain elite, even in with its multicultural mandate, and I always struggled with the fact of being from one culture and living in another. I have had ample time exploring this with all of you and for this I am very grateful. You are an eclectic bunch of "Inkslingers", to borrow James Dewar and Sue Reynold’s term for writers. 

I have recently joined another group of international writers through the courses I am taking with the University of Iowa. This too is a diverse group of writers from all over the world and its purpose is simply for group members to act as beta readers to one another. I was thinking a bit of the conversation in last month’s meeting and the need for us to be beta readers to one another.

What makes this group I now belong to work so effortlessly in this probably has to do with the fact that we are all literary writers. Each genre of writing functions on its own rules and those who work within a genre become experts over time and look for expert advice. I marvel how I set out to find a group of literary writers and how this came my way when I was ready. At Writers Abroad we don’t all write in the same genre and I wonder how we could perhaps support one another better if we did include this in our ongoing dialogue.

This Week Monday 15th May
Category: Site News
Tags: new. writers abroad

Site News - Monday 15th May

Maggie has added this week's blog on expectations prompted by not hearing immediately from her children at the start of Mother's Day. What are your writing expectations? Do you always expect to write the 'next best thing' or do you need to moderate your expectations and work with goals and hopes instead?

Crilly had posted some writing prompts in the muses for the week. As always a selection of things for poets, non fiction or fiction writing using pictures, words or phrases. 

The May challenges and opportunities are open with a selection of competitions of different lengths to try or post something different you are working on. 

The Ad Hoc team continue to inspire on the bragging stool. Well done to all of them. Sue might be away this week but I have no doubt she will still get her challenge in to them...

The next edition of the magazine has been proof read and edited and I'm sure Jo will have it to everyone soon for a final check before it is released on the world.

The next formal chat is on Sunday 21st May with Vanessa in the chair. 11am CET I believe.

I hope I've covered everything. Apologies if I've missed anything or anyone. Have a good writing week!


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This Week 22nd May 2017
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