Wednesday, 18 February 2009

In praise of Mslexia


The long promised post on why you should subscribe or at least a copy of Mslexia. It's a quarterly magazine based in Newcastle on Tyne aimed at women who write (but men may read too.)
There are regular columns, opinion, pieces, poems and short stories and listings. And lots of interesting ads, some verging on the vanity publishing but mostly clearly so labeled. They have a try before you buy offer if you live in the UK.

In the Jan/Feb/Mar issue there was:
- Letters (not all fawning endorsements)
- a feature on Welsh women writers, fiction and poetry
- competition to design a Mslexia cover, deadline 27 Feb, prize £500
- An interview with Maggie O'Farrell. The interviews traditionally feature a 'How to write a book' list by the writer.

Get excited when a character turns to you and says, "Actually, I'm not going to do that, I'm going to do this!"


- Article on grant applications
- Interview with Amanda Ross, the buyer for Richard and Judy
- One in a series with a poet on how they wrote and revised a poem, this time by Ruth Padel. Always interesting to get an insight into how someone else's thought process works.
- A writing 'workshop' by Bernadine Evaristo on the importance of beginnings in a novel.
- One in a series of going from a first draft to the published version of part of a nove. The before and after process and thinking behind it is great.
- Poetry workshop by Colette Bryce about a submitted poem before she workshoped it with the poet and after.
- article on duologues on the radio
- writing exercises
- Curious incidents. Mine your memory for true life events that touch or teach the reader.
- Flash fiction
- Poems and short stories in the theme of the Four Elements with a commentary by Lavinia Greenlaw
- How to write a bestseller using Cecelia Ahern as an Example
- Reviews including Debut novels (these don't get reviewed many other places) and Crime
- Literary landmarks. Ground breaking works in the history of Women's literature.
- Profile of an independent press, this time Beautiful Books, imprints Burning House and Bloody Books.
- Out Now books by Mslexia subscribers
- Article on comedy writing with websites
- listings, mainly UK based. There have been Irish ones from time to time so if you run an Irish writing competition/festival/whatever, there's no harm in letting them know. A good deal of time ahead of time.

8 comments:

hope said...

Hi,

I like reading your blog and at first I was marvelled to see such a blog. You have a gift of writing, keep up the good work. I'll be back soon to read more.

Regards,
Hope

BarbaraS said...

I subscribed for a while back in 2004/05. I thought it was a good read for the woman writer, and they also do very nice diaries too...

Michael Farry said...

Colette Bryce is a featured reader in the Dun Laoghaire Poetry Now Festival 26-29 March and is giving a workshop there which I'd recommend - I attended a course by her in UK. And her "Self-Portrait in the Dark" is on the shortlist the Irish Times Poetry Now Award which will be announced at the Festival.
Are you sure men are allowed to read Mslexia though?

Emerging Writer said...

Hi, That's interesting Michael. How did the workshop run? I've found that some writers can teach and some can't.

Michael Farry said...

I really enjoyed her workshop sessions. She and another tutor, Mathew Hollis gave the week long Arvon course.

Emerging Writer said...

Arvon - oo I'm jealous

Emerging Writer said...

Arvon - oo I'm jealous

Michael Farry said...

I know! It was like a retreat, cut off from the world in Yorkshire with poets. No internet, no TV. Sylvia Plath's grave was at the top of the hill and Ted Hughes once owned the house. Met some lovely people some of whom have published books since. I'd better get a move on! I got my ticket for Dun Laoghaire yesterday.