Well, I am delighted to be able to share that I am back on the Romantic Novelists Association New Writers Scheme for 2013!
I’m very excited about it as I’ve been on the scheme for the last three years – which hardly seems possible – and have found it absolutely invaluable not only to my writing (constructive, positive readers reports, finalist in the Elizabeth Goudge Trophy, requests for full and partial manuscripts) but also in the support that I’ve received emotionally in my journey to publication. Having a bunch of people who know what I’m wittering on about and who believe in me, a favour which I try to return, is great. Writing can be a lonely business (save for the characters who live in my head) and it’s nice to know others experience the same highs and lows.
Okay, so I’m not published yet, but slowly and surely over the last few years I’ve gotten closer and closer. Perhaps there is a lot of pig-headed stubbornness about me in terms of that, but the single most common writing tip I’ve received over the last few years from published authors was about perseverance; to keep going no matter what. Apparently the difference between a published author and an unpublished one is that the published one never gave up. So I’m afraid I’m hanging in there!
The NWS is full again this year – there is always a race to get to the 250 slots available – but for those of you who don’t know much about it and who may want to consider joining a writing association at some point, the scheme is a probationary membership for unpublished writers, with a MS critique thrown in as well as being able to attend parties, meetings and the conference, as well as receipt of the quarterly magazine, Romance Matters. You can find out more about it here http://www.romanticnovelistsassociation.org/index.php/join/new_writers_scheme
Receiving confirmation that I was back in the scheme tied in very neatly to the New Year’s resolutions that I’ve been considering. Some of them are writerly and some are not, but I’ve tried to keep them simple and realistic so that I don’t end up breaking them before January is over. So here they are;
1. Spend more quality time with my husband and children (aka not watching TV with them, doing something a bit more interactive)
2. Spend less time on the unnecessary small stuff
3. Strive to get just a little bit fitter
4. Don’t sweat the small stuff – bad things happen in life and sometimes it’s no-one’s fault, it’s just bad luck. Take a deep breath and carry on.
5. Write at least five times a week – anything; a blog post, a short story, one of the WIP’s
6. Enter a competition or submit to agents or publishers at least once a month; make sure something is out there.
7. Finish Random Acts, send it out to beta readers, revise and rewrite it, polish it mercilessly and then send it off to the New Writers’ Scheme (well before the 31 August deadline).
What writers’ associations are you a member of and why? What are your resolutions for 2013?
Happy writing, Nikki.