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This Week on Writers Abroad
Category: Site News

Here's the latest action here at Writers Abroad!

Alyson has provided our Muses - reminding us it's time to get our Valentine stories written, asked us to think about our holidays and provided some pictures.†

I've written a very short Blog about my break; away from home and the Internet.

There are a few people occupying the Bragging Stool: Marit with her returning Shamelurkers, John (aka Glyn) has been asked for a follow up to Ssh, his poetry collection and Jill has posted a link to her successful submission in the Global Short Story competition.

The September Challenge is still open, Rilla has posted a piece so if you have time please check in and provide some feedback.

I'm not sure how the WA magazine is going but I'll check it out this week.

A Welcome Break
Category: Writing
Tags: writing internet

Iíve just spent 7 days in the South of Italy not that far from home but oh, so different to our life here in Le Marche. A lovely modern property for two, a few steps away from the Ionian Sea and no animals to care for, thanks to my sister-in-law and her husband who house sat for us.

The main difference was the lack of access to the internet. It was quite an experience and a liberating one at that. I sat in cafes and bars where people talked to one another instead of heads down, thumbs tapping away at their mobile phones or tablets. My senses were heightened as I listened to the flow and ebb of the waves from our patio and bee-eaters chirruping away high in the sky. I stopped to touch the vibrant coloured flowers and took in the smells of the sea, enjoyed the sensation of sand and rock beneath my feet. †And I read. I read lots. Of course I took writing stuff with me, just in case. And I scribbled notes and observations that I didnít want to forget. †And in my head, I plotted and created characters and settings or thought about the next writing project. As writers, I think itís quite impossible not to think about writing at least.

When I checked this morning I was surprised to be reminded that the World Wide Web was only released in 1989, twenty five years ago. It doesnít seem a long time ago, though in fact itís half my life time. The advancement of technology has been grown incredibly since then and the internet and the ability to discover things in a blink of an eye will be a natural part of life for the generation of today.

And of course, now Iím back, it hasnít taken me long to be swallowed up again by the deep chasm that we all disappear into and the distractions that this vast technological creature provides. As an expat writer it has and will remain an invaluable tool and without which there would be no WA, which is unthinkable.†

In A Couple Sentences Tags: taglines writing resources novels

Can you describe your novel in a couple lines? Itís not easy to sum up a book in such a short space and also encapsulate the flavour of it but thatís what authors have to do when marketing their novels. Itís called a tagline and I had to write one last week for the novel Iím currently working on. I jotted down lots of ideas and possibilities, re-wrote them and tried again, looking for what would help to sell my novel to the agent I was scheduled to meet at the Historical Novel Societyís conference in London last weekend.

Taglines are often used on the covers of books or as the heading for the back cover blurb to entice readers. The idea is to draw in the reader and make them want to read more. I know it works because when Iím browsing in a shop or online I have to pick up a book that has an interesting tagline and find out more. ††

It works and looks effortless, but it isnít easy to write. It has to do a lot in a short space: it needs to provide a sense of what and who the book is about concisely.

It also needs to convey a sense of the setting, mood or tone, and theme of the book as well as defining what genre it is. So the wording has to be chosen carefully to provide not only information but also to create the atmosphere that will appeal to the type of reader who will likely enjoy the book. Add an emotional punch that grabs the reader and it will be a winner.

When I set out to write my tagline I googled information on how to write one, as well as examples to help me concoct my own. Thereís a lot written on the topic but the recurring theme seems to be that a tagline should be clear and simple. Multi-syllable words arenít necessary or desirable. It should be easy to understand so the reader gets the message. Thatís what writers must aim for.

Taglines make me think of water-filled snow globes, the ones that have a tiny scene inside and when you shake them tiny snowflakes fall on the scene. You look into them and see a tiny world inside a glass ball. If a tagline is well written it brings an image of the story to life in the readerís mind and makes them want to step into that world.

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Monday, September 15, 2014
This Week on Writers Abroad
Recent Blog Posts
A Welcome Break
Posted by Jo Lamb

Iíve just spent 7 days in the South of Italy not that far from home but oh, so different to our life here in Le...Read More

In A Couple Sentences
Posted by Dianne Ascroft

Can you describe your novel in a couple lines? Itís not easy to sum up a book in such a short space and also encapsulate...Read More

Through the Keyhole
Posted by Angela

I recently got back from a home-exchange holiday in Shropshire. We stayed in a family home at the foot of the magnificent, Caer Caradoc. A...Read More

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