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The Future Bookshelf Features

‘I have one daily writing tool: free writing’

I have one writing tool that I use almost daily. This tool moves me from the nebulous mess of an idea to some sort of draft. This tool has taught me to write fast and […]

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‘The right idea is one that obsesses you’

How would a would-be novelist know they’ve found the right idea?   The right idea is one that obsesses you. Don’t choose an idea because it’s fashionable or because you think it’ll suit the market. […]

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‘Some of the most outrageously popular books come completely out of leftfield’

There is no better feeling as an editor than being completely swept away by a submission, losing the rest of the working day, the evening, the weekend or even the holiday to it. And nothing […]

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‘Work out what kinds of fiction you are drawn to and why’

What’s the first thing that someone who wants to write a novel should do?   Read widely at first – including novels and short story collections, and try to work out what kinds of fiction […]

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‘Recognise the need for an idea to flower’

Successful authors recognise the need for an idea to flower. Inspiration doesn’t just mean being hit with one idea suddenly; it can also mean cultivating it, allowing it to grow in our subconscious, and letting […]

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‘Curiosity and a sense of adventure get new projects off the ground’

How do I get started? By being curious and determined. My debut thriller Yesterday is about the question ‘how do you solve a murder when you can only remember yesterday?’. The concept came to me […]

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‘Multiple ideas can interact in interesting ways’

Ideas do not exist in isolation. The richest, most interesting novels are not just based around a single notion, but instead draw upon multiple ideas. If you are finding it difficult to come up with […]

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‘One small twist and even old themes can feel fresh’

The Helsinki Bus Station Theory from Get Started in Writing Young Adult Fiction by Juliet Mushens   One good exercise for coming up with ideas is to look at existing novels and plot synopses, and to […]

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Imagine your place on the bookshelf of the future

We believe that publishing should be open and accessible to all people, from all backgrounds, from all communities. But sometimes knowing where to begin, or even how to start, can be intimidating. Each month this […]

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How Do I Write in my Chosen Genre?

Devote five minutes to writing down everything you observe with your senses – all you can see, hear, feel, smell and taste – and another minute of what’s called kinaesthesia: how your shoulder knows you’ve […]

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How Do I Bring My Novel To Life?

Shut your eyes; think back to your childhood. Can you remember the house of a friend or a relative that had a different smell from your house? Let your mind wander over it; let the […]

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What Are the Writing Rules?

This month’s task is about grammar and how you choose to use it. To begin, start a free-write on the topic of your choosing – but write even more loosely than usual – free associate, […]

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