Jane Markland

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Jane Markland Discussions
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Hi everyone - please bear with me as laptop has packed up, so typing this on my phone. I have just r…
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  •  · Wonderful, that's really inspiring. Congratulations and here's to your (virtual) pen.
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Hi everyoneAfter joining Jericho Writers in September last year, I can only say good things. I have …
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Hi Veanna, I'd say being on here is a great start, it's taken me years to learn how to write, I've been lucky to meet two fantastic people while doing NaNoWriMo who have both mentored and helped me, along with all the information on here.My debut novel took me eight years from the first draft to being ready for publication, I've lost count of how many versions there are, well over 10, I think 12 or 14 in the end. I've paid for two critiques which have wiped out my savings both times but both did help. If you're a member here, you can put your work into the critique section for fellow members to read, I have beta read for a couple fo people on here, and all of this helps. If you have a local writing group, that may well be worth joining. I didn't have one which met in the evenings, so I did NaNoWriMo instead (before the pandemic where we met up in the library). Obviously now, since COVID there are loads of things online. All of it adds up. 

Also highly recommended is to go from start to finish through all the material on here, especially Harry's course on how to write and the agent slush pile videos. Also there are older videos of the York Festival a few years back on certain aspects of writing, character, show not tell, that kind of thing, they are great. 

I'd also recommend Twitter, the writing community are great and there are all kinds of offers from people to mentor, read for you, some agents do mentoring courses. All fo this is available for little or no money. Also, I know this sounds daft, but read, read everything, even outside the genre or type of story you are writing. Best of luck, and I'm happy to read excerpts in the peer critique section.  Best of luck and enjoy the writing.  

Would love to attend, it, but sadly it's financially well out of my reach. Have a great time everyone who is going. I'm sure it'll be a wonderful occasion.  

Hi Anne, the title is Cielo and the kindle version is published on 2nd June. Thank you :-)

Hi Lynn, thank you , any help would be great, I have put a few things on Twitter, but all the help I can get would be appreciated.  Will of course do the same for you :-)

Hi everyone, just wanted to let you know, my debut is finally live to pre-order on Amazon. It's been a long road - eight years and many, many drafts, but I would be thrilled if anyone would like to read. Publication date is 2nd June, there is a paperback version available, but don't have the price at the moment. No agent as such, this is through an independent publisher, SpellBound Books. 

Please do message me here if you'd like any further information. 

Thanks Jo, I'm always up for new systems, at least ones I can understand, but I taught myself Scrivener so I will try it when it's available.  

Hi Glyn, oh I know the pain and now know I sent my debut out too soon, but that was before Jericho and a lot of advice from the past four or so years. I got one reply in SIX minutes. How can anyone read even 5,000 words that quickly. Obviously they thought it was rubbish from the first line.  Eventually I submitted my debut to independent publishers (it's coming out early June) BUT I will go back to agents with book two which is more commercial and armed with advice from Jericho and knowing more writers now, I feel much more confident. I find it very difficult to work out which agent is going to like my book, after researching for weeks, looking at who they represent, what books they've recently liked, it's still hard. 

Best chance you have is on here. The agent match, the agents who come on doing webinars and all the advice. Most agents I've seen here say they read the submissions themselves, I guess it depends on how big the agency is?  The thing which got me is the ones who just don't respond. Not at all. 

Good luck with your ongoing queries, you will make it in the end. There is an agent out there. The best advice established authors give is to never give up and read a lot. They didn't and got their book published.  

Congratulations Caron, pre-ordered and excited to read.....

Waterstones on Thursday L, hoping to get the spreadges version.....

Hi Jo, I did have.a look at their website but unfortunately they don't do a Mac desktop version and there is no way I can write a book on my phone, so will have to wait until they manage to create a version I can use, but it does look good. Thanks for highlighting it to us.  

Hi Jo, thanks for posting about Novel software, I've never heard of it but will have a look at it. I've used Scrivener for a long time and currently am using version 3 on a Mac. Like most things, you find things which work for you, and I have to say Scrivener is the best I've tried. Like Brigette I prefer buying something outright. I have M Word on this basis, though my version is quite old, it still works with the Mac operating system. 

I find Scrivener does help all aspects of writing, planning, making notes, writing in scenes and then putting the whole draft together to make a book. I don't transfer to word until I have to as I hate it, too much scrolling to find things. As for saving work, I save every time I add anything new and email it to myself. I've learnt the hard way I'm afraid, and had to write the whole of my first book again.  I have done extensive editing in Scrivener but I guess you can do this on any programme, chaining font or colour of text.  

As for paying for stuff, I am on a v tight budget, so usually do NaNoWriMo and get updates of software half price then. 

The one piece of software I would love is a good proof editor. I have tried Pro Writing Aid, but it makes my prose too clunky and changes from English to US English, sadly this takes ages to change back again, but that is nit picking really. Sadly I think printing your book out and going down every line with a ruler is the only way to do it (certainly for me). But if anyone knows anything which would help that would be fab. 

You can do character template, setting templates etc in Scrivener, and import files from practically anywhere for research or information. 

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Jane Markland
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