Quite by chance the other day, I came upon a list of recently established Literary Agents on the internet. I almost immediately found two that sounded promising and on Sunday - after cross-referencing them in the 2014 W&AYB - I emailed the obligatory synopsis and opening chapters of The Book to them, so fingers crossed. And last Saturday, of course, saw the latest AYW session take place at Ashburton Library. All five children from the first session turned up, as did two new members, so I was absolutely over the moon! If two new members turn up every session for the next four sessions, the numbers will be almost up to where they were last year before we lost our venue. And word is definitely getting out there. One of the youngsters that turned up last Saturday just came via word-of-mouth! Which - as any writer knows - is the most effective marketing tool there is! And it's free.
Having got the submissions off to the two agencies, I have now decided to concentrate on entering a couple of competitions. My latest Writing Magazine is absolutely chocablock full of competitions to enter so I will round up a couple of the most tantalising (and challenging) ones over the next day or two and get cracking on them. I desperately want an iPad and winning one may be my only chance of getting it at this point in time. I like Writing Competitions though, it must be said. They give you a deadline to work to and guidelines of what they want. The more you enter, the more confident you get. It is kind of like a practice-run to being a fully-fledged writer where you have briefs and commissions flying at you left right and centre (and believe me I know. I am actually lucky enough to have actually been there for a year or so back in the mid 80s when I had so much work coming in I was actually able to give up the Day Job for a while just to accommodate it all. And I was getting paid! I think that was probably the happiest working year of my entire life and I'd quite like the chance to go back there).
I did quite well in competitions around that time. I won one and was a runner up in two, and all three pieces were published. It is always nice when something like that happens.
Don't forget to tweet me @Jilly66408011 or comment just to let me know you are still in the land of the living (she says hopefully). And I would love to hear from any other writers who keep a blog ...