Esther | Marketing Assistant | Jericho Writers

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Hello! I'm Esther, and I'm the Marketing Assistant at Jericho Writers. I can usually be found running our social media accounts and helping out with all things marketing ☺️ Currently writing my dissertation for my MA in Publishing Media. I'm always happy to chat so come and say hi! 

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Developmental Editing has landed! 


You asked – we answered. In this newsletter, find out more about our brand-new editorial service and how it differs from a manuscript assessment. We also have six new webinars to register for, exploring genres from sci-fi to historical fiction, and advice on how to get feedback on your work.  


WEBINAR: Making the most of feedback, with Dr Sharon Zink (Member exclusive) 


TONIGHT. So you have someone’s assessment of your writing – what next? In this fun and supportive 1.5 hour workshop, we’ll talk about who to go to read your writing and when to follow their advice, or stick to your guns. 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW 

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE



This week at Jericho Writers:


EDITORIAL: Developmental Editing – NEW! 


You asked and we’ve delivered. Apply for a Developmental Edit now and receive a full-manuscript report, in-text comments throughout your text and a sixty-minute follow-up call with your editor. Similar to what you’d get from a Big-Five publisher. Nice! 


FIND OUT MORE 


BLOG: The different types of editing 


What’s the difference between a developmental edit and a structural edit? Are copy-editing and line-editing the same? Find out in this article.  


READ NOW 


WEBINARS: NEW events added for February (Member exclusive) 


Next month is genre month, and we’ve bagged some of the biggest names to spotlight advice specific to sci-fi and fantasy; literary fiction; women’s fiction; crime and thrillers; memoir and historical fiction. Join us now to register. 


FIND OUT MORE 


What is developmental editing?  


Developmental Editing has been all the rage in US writing circles for years now, but is still relatively new to other parts of the world. So what IS it? And what makes it different to a Manuscript Assessment?  


Well, with a Manuscript Assessment at Jericho Writers, you enter the word count of your finished manuscript then send the whole thing to us. Stephanie, Polly, Elsie or Miriam then hand-match you to one of our expert editors (and when we say expert, we mean we are extremely picky about only working with the best!) Your editor then reads your entire manuscript – start to finish – and gives you a 3,500 word+ report on structural things such as characterisation, plot and prose. You have the opportunity then to ask questions directly to your editor over email.  


Developmental Editing is similar to a manuscript assessment, as you get a similar report back. However, you also get in-text edits and comments on your work, so you can see exactly where things need to be improved, including bonus finer points such as syntax errors and spelling mistakes. You’ll also get the opportunity to book a sixty-minute call with your editor afterwards, which is a wonderful opportunity to chat to someone who knows your book inside-out.  


Because Developmental Editing asks so much time and dedication from our editors, we ask all writers to apply for this service before paying for it, so we can assess your work and ensure we’re matching you with your perfect editor.  


As with all Jericho Writers editorial services, both come with our gold-standard guarantee and a promise that if your editor thinks you’re ready, we’ll use our contacts to help your book find an agent or publisher (if you wish us to!) We actually matched a writer last week and we can’t wait to shout about their brilliant book! 


So! Have you had a Developmental Edit or Manuscript Assessment? Or are you thinking about taking the plunge, but not sure if it’s for you? Share your experiences and chat here in the Townhouse. 


Sarah x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members) 


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors. 


Complete Novel Mentoring (Discounts available for members)


Write or edit your book alongside a world-leading author or editor. Alumni have gone on to be longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.  


Writing around family, work and life-curveballs

Does anyone else start the year feeling productive only to have life get in the way? We feel you. Whether it’s Covid-curveballs, or daily work/family/social commitments, sometimes our best-laid writing plans don’t work out. This newsletter features advice on staying motivated when time is scarce.  

WEBINAR: Free webinar on writing goals – open to everyone 


TONIGHT. Join the published and unpublished writers at team Jericho as we discuss our writing goals for the year and how to ensure we reach them. All are welcome to this one! 


REGISTER NOW


This week at Jericho Writers:


EDITORIAL: Developmental Editing – NEW! 


You asked and we’ve delivered. Apply for a Developmental Edit now and receive a full-manuscript report, in-text comments throughout your text and a sixty-minute follow-up call with your editor. Similar to what you’d get from a Big-Five publisher. Nice! 


FIND OUT MORE 


BLOG: How to actually finish your damn novel 


One of the hardest things about finishing a novel – before you think about ideas, characters, or plotting – is finding time and confidence with all those words to write.  


READ NOW 


SNAPSHOT: Unblock your writing (Exclusive for members) 


Our ten-minute snapshot films are created to fit into small chunks of time. This one from Harry Bingham is about how to defeat writer’s block and put pen to paper once again.  


FIND OUT MORE 


How to write around lockdown


I’m writing this as the UK has plunged into yet another lockdown and my activities have been legally limited to work, TV, books and walking once a day.  


In some ways, lockdown should give us MORE time to write. Social obligations are no longer a worry and writing is - I suppose – something we do for fun. So why is it somehow so much harder to put pen to paper?  


Those of you with kids will be pointing at them mouthing ‘homeschooling’, and this is something that’s going to swallow both time and energy for thousands of writers. There’s also the whole ‘working from home’ thing for those of you who can, and although sitting in my pyjamas all day does have its perks, it does make it harder somehow to open my laptop again after a long day and work some more. 


I’m really looking forward to Holly Seddon’s webinar on 14 January on this – not only as she has four kids, a work-from-home job AND a career as a bestselling author – but also so I can check in with members who are all battling the same things. We really are all in this together and that really does help to know.  


For me, my tricks to write during lockdown are bitesize chunks. I’m not going to attempt to write every day, because I know my brain can’t do that around work right now. I will be writing at weekends though. And in the morning as soon as I get up, and then perhaps after a local walk. I’ll reward myself with treats (because dry January isn’t a thing this year!), bad TV and good books. And – at the end of all this – hopefully we’ll have something positive to show for it. And if not – hey – sometimes there are bigger things going on.  


So tell me – what are you doing to motivate yourself through lockdown? What are your tips for finding time to write – whatever your personal circumstances right now? Share them in the Townhouse here. We’re all in this together.  


Sarah x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Agent one-to-one sessions (10% member discount)  


Book a one-to-one call with the literary agent or book doctor of your choice and get that all-important feedback on your work. Last few remaining. 


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members) 


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors. 


Set your writing goal and smash it before July 

2020 was... well – let's just be polite and say that it’s nice to have it behind us. 2021 is a whole new year, filled with possibility. SUCH AS the possibility that you might just finish that book you’re writing. So, pull up your socks and get ready to knuckle down - let’s make this year your year.  


WEBINAR: Free webinar on writing goals – open to everyone 


12 January. Join the published and unpublished writers at team Jericho as we discuss our writing goals for the year and how to ensure we reach them. All are welcome to this one! 


REGISTER NOW 


This week at Jericho Writers:


WEBINARS: January is ‘finishing your book’ month (Exclusive to members) 


We’re starting January as we mean to go on, with webinars from Dr Sharon Zink, Linda Camacho, Patrice Lawrence and more, themed around motivation.  


SEE THE FULL LIST


BLOG: Writing goals: how to set them and how to achieve them 


This blog post will give you the tools you need to set a realistic target for your writing this year and ensure you reach it before the year is out. 


READ NOW 


COMMUNITY: Declare your 2021 writing goal (Open to all) 


If you haven’t already, declare your writing goal alongside fellow members here and make a pact with the universe to reach it before July. We’ll follow this up with a webinar with the team on January 12th to discuss how we can ensure we reach them.   


DECLARE YOUR GOAL 


How to finish a book (by someone who’s written 7)

 

Like many of you, I’m starting 2021 with the goal to finish writing the first draft of a book.  


My first book took me four years to write and another two to edit. I’m hoping this book will take three months to write, and nine to edit. Here's my guide to planning (not panicking):  


1: Put effort into planning. I used to be a no-planning-pantser, but now I’m a solid plotter. I’ve spent two months LIVING my book – drawing plot arcs; filling in character questionnaires; researching; playing with voice and writing it all out in synopsis form. It’ll all help when it comes to the next step. 


2: Give yourself a realistic target. I know I can usually write 800 words before I get bored. 1,000 is a push. I write my novels in one-week chunks. I set a target of 1,000 words a day, but really just give myself the goal of 7,000 words a week. Sometimes, I need a night off. As long as I make up for it over the weekend, we’re good.  


3: Write a ‘ditch draft’. Write, write, write and don’t look back. Write thinking you’ll end up deleting every single word. Just let those crappy words flow.  


4: Re-write that draft. Once I’ve finished my ditch draft, I open a new document and start again. I can copy the good bits over this way, but give myself clean space to re-structure scenes. Not all writers love this tip (because it’s double the work), but it’s saved me MONTHS of pain not seeing the woods for the trees.  


5: Give yourself a break. Sometimes life gets in the way, and that’s okay. Just do what you need to do to keep going when you can. If the only thing stopping you from writing is yourself, then it’s time to give that self a stern talking to.  


So, what’s your goal for this year? How are you going to reach it? Declare it in the comments here and give yourself a commitment


Sarah x 



Plus, don’t miss: 

 

Agent one-to-one January sessions now open for booking! (10% member discount)  


Book a one-to-one call with the literary agent or book doctor of your choice and get that all-important feedback on your work. Warning – these will sell out fast. 


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members)


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors. 



New year – new ideas

There’s something special about coming up with a new idea. The ‘I can’t stop thinking about you’ honeymoon phase can send your mind reeling, your heart aflutter and your pen dancing across the page again. This newsletter contains writing prompts and tips to start 2021 with a brand-new-shiny thing to fall in love with.  


‘Self-Edit Your Novel’ tutored course bursary closes TODAY! 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before the end of today!  


FIND OUT MORE 


This week at Jericho Writers:


WEBINAR: Writing good endings with Debi Alper (FREE) 


5 January. What better way to start the year than an hour with top editor Debi Alper? Register now to join Debi for the first webinar of the year looking at what makes a good ending. 

MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW 

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE


BLOG: How to get ideas and make them better 


Our flagship article on where book ideas come from and how you can ensure yours are good enough to get published, right from the off.  


READ NOW 


REPLAY: New ideas hour (Exclusive for members) 


Join me and my face for an hour of writing exercises, with tips on ones you can do at home on your own, as well as advice on what makes a ‘good’ idea.  

MEMBERS - WATCH NOW 

NON-MEMBERS - JOIN US TO WATCH


Three writing prompts to try before the end of the year 


1: Title – ‘In the Silence’ 


Write this title at the top of your page and then write the story or poem that goes with it.  


2: First line - ‘The first time it happened, I was...’  


Write this as the first line of a story and describe what happens next.  


3: Character – this picture 


Can’t see the link? A lady stands on the edge of a lake with her arms out. Write her story.  


BONUS PROMPT: Write a story or poem inspired by the last text you sent.  


After you’ve done these, why not share them with the Community? Sign up for free, tell us which prompt you did and share your words here! Looking forward to reading them. 


Sarah J x 


Plus, don't miss:

Agent one-to-one January sessions now open for booking! (10% member discount)  


Book a one-to-one call with the literary agent or book doctor of your choice and get that all-important feedback on your work. Warning – these will sell out fast. 


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members)


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members) 


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors. 


Jericho Writers office opening hours 


Our team are around during the festive period if you need our help for any writing-related reason at all. Our office hours are (all times GMT):  


09:00 – 17:00 GMT, Monday to Friday. 


CLOSED from 12:00 on 31 December and all day 1 January.  


CONTACT OUR WRITER SUPPORT TEAM 

Keep creating over Christmas

This time of year can go one of two ways – we can either have zero time alone at all to even think about writing, or we can have more time than we know what to do with. Whatever the next week looks like for you – here are some tips to keep creative.  


Jericho Writers office opening hours 


Our team are around during the festive period if you need our help for any writing-related reason at all. Our office hours are (all times GMT):  


09:00 – 17:00 GMT, Monday to Friday. 


CLOSED from 12:00 on 24 December; all day on 25 & 28 December; from 12:00 on 31 December and all day 1 January.  


CONTACT OUR WRITER SUPPORT TEAM 


This week at Jericho Writers:

 

WEBINARS: January is ‘finishing your book’ month (exclusive for members) 


We’re starting January as we mean to go on, with webinars from Debi Alper, Linda Camacho, Patrice Lawrence and more, themed around motivation. Join Jericho Writers now and be ready to kick off your writing year from 5 January! 


SEE THE FULL LIST



BLOG: Tips for writing a book for the first time 


This article condenses all our free advice on writing a book in one place. Whatever’s stopping you from putting pen to paper – beat it here! 


READ NOW



REPLAY: How to find time to finish your novel (exclusive for members) 


Holly Seddon has written several bestselling novels around four children and a day job. Learn the secret to finding time to write in this webinar replay.  


MEMBERS - WATCH NOW 

JOIN JERICHO WRITERS TO WATCH 



How to stay motivated to write in the dregs of 2020  


Whether you celebrate Christmas or not – the final week of 2020 is probably going to look a little different than it usually does. Here in the UK, our usual hectic family-visiting rounds have been reduced to just two households, which could either mean empty bank holidays – or a house bursting with sugar-filled kids with nowhere to go.  


For me, writing is a creative outlet that allows me to go to my happy place. If you’d like to end 2020 in your writing happy place, here are some tips to make it happen:  


1: Set a new routine.  


Getting up early to write might not work as well Christmas day. Switch it around instead to writing during quiet times – maybe just before bed, or mid-afternoon when everyone is napping off the turkey.  


2: Maintain a room of your own.  


Give yourself your own space to write in, away from the pressures of the end of the year. Even if your only ‘safe’ space is the bathroom, lock the door, take a pew and write.  


3: Write something new 


Motivation is particularly hard this time of year, so give yourself a break from your current project and try some fun writing prompts to keep your head in the game. You never know – your next story idea might come out of it. 


Have you got some good news to share this month? Have you accomplished something you’re particularly proud about? Join the Townhouse for free and share in our December good news roundup! 


Sarah x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary closes 29 December 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before 29 December.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members)


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors. 


What makes a great elevator pitch?

You’re in an elevator with a world-leading agent. “What’s your book about?” they ask. You have two floors to make them fall in love with your idea – how do you phrase it? This is the art of the elevator pitch – hooking someone in just one or two sentences. So, how do you do it? 


CONGRATULATIONS: To Christine for winning our Pitch Perfect competition!  


Thanks to everyone who entered and came along to last night’s Pitch Perfect webinar. The winner was Christine McVie, who’s won a free one-to-one call with an agent and a free copy of Harry Bingham’s How to Write! 

MEMBERS - CATCH THE REPLAY HERE SOON 

BECOME A MEMBER


This week at Jericho Writers: 


REPLAY: Perfect your elevator pitch (exclusive for members) 


Join Harry Bingham as he runs through the essential components of an elevator pitch and gives members feedback on theirs, live.  

MEMBERS - WATCH NOW 

JOIN US TO WATCH


BLOG: How to write an elevator pitch for your story 


Writing is scary – but of all the scary things about it, perhaps the scariest is getting the concept right. This blog looks at nailing your concept and presenting it in the best possible way. 


READ MORE 


COURSE: Is your idea good enough? (Module exclusive to members) 

One of the questions that can come out of working on a pitch is the value of the idea itself. In this module in the How to Write video course, we look at what makes a ‘good’ idea.

LOGGED IN MEMBER LINK 

NON MEMBER LINK  


How NOT to write an elevator pitch 


Are you making any of these common mistakes in your pitch? 


Mistake 1: It’s a lot more than 20 words  


Elevator pitches should be short and sharp. If you find yours running on, it might be time to go back to the drawing board! 


Mistake 2: It’s too vague 


‘A coming-of-age story’ - ‘a story of love and loss’ - these all sound pleasant enough, but what it is about them that separate them from everything else the agent might read that day? Pinpoint the unique element to your story and make that the focus.  


Mistake 3: It contains too many characters 


You only have a short amount of time – group characters together or focus in on your main one. We don’t need to know subplot here, or even character names.  


Mistake 4: It raises the wrong kind of questions 


The questions you’ll want to be aiming for are the ones that start: ‘ooo - why? I’d love to know more’ - rather than: ‘wait - what?’ Ensure your pitch is coherent and clear.  


What’s the elevator pitch for your work-in-progress? Try them out amongst friends in the Townhouse, here. 


Sarah J x


Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary closes 29 December 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before 29 December.  


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members) 


Get professional feedback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 



When you want more than a standard rejection 


We get it – agents are busy people. They have clients to look after and up to two thousand unsolicited manuscript submissions every year. But from the writer's side, it can be difficult to know what to do when faced with template rejections, without any clue as to why you keep getting them.  


Enter Jericho Writers! 


WEBINAR: Slushpile Live with Laura Williams (Exclusive to members) 


TOMORROW. Join literary agent Laura Williams as she reads member’s query letters and opening pages live in this extra-special webinar. Lots to learn in this one, whether your work is chosen or not.  


MEMBERS - REGISTER HERE 

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE 


This week at Jericho Writers:


FEEDBACK: Agent one-to-one December sessions now open! (10% member discount) 


Book a one-to-one call with the literary agent or book doctor of your choice and get that all-important feedback on your work. Warning – these will sell out fast. 


BOOK NOW 


ASK JERICHO: Book your free query letter feedback call with us (Exclusive to members) 


Did you know that members of Jericho Writers get free feedback on their query letter? Submit yours by email or book a phone call with us to whip yours into shape.  


FIND OUT MORE 


WEBINAR: Pitch Perfect competition (Exclusive to members) 


14 December. Members can submit their elevator pitch now for the chance to win a free one-to-one and a copy of Harry Bingham’s book, ‘Getting Published’. Join us for the live event to see which pitch will be declared winner by a panel of literary agent judges.  


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE 


What to say to an agent in a one-to-one 

One-to-ones with agents can be career-changing. Not because they always lead to representation (I’ve had dozens in my time and none of them lead to that!) - but because they offer you professional advice.  


Most one-to-ones are quick. You’ll often only get 10-15 minutes to chat to them. They SHOULD have read work that you’ve submitted beforehand – in which case, follow all the usual submission rules you would if emailing them.  


Try to avoid too much chitchat on the call. A little bit at the beginning can be nice to settle your nerves and as a reminder that agents are just people. The agent should usually do most of the talking for you – the good ones will have made notes on your work. Have a pen ready to write all these down. You can also download an app to record your conversation if that’s easier – just make sure you let the agent know that’s what you’re doing.  


It’s also useful to have your own questions prepared. Think about what it is that you’d most like to know. Perhaps it’s a simple: “what can I do to make this better?” Perhaps it’s more directed at the unique perspective an agent has, such as: “is there a market for this right now?”  


Sometimes, you’ll come away from a one-to-one annoyed. The agent might have said something you don’t agree with, or something you’re not ready to hear yet. It’s okay to disregard advice if your gut says ‘no’. But do think about it carefully. I once had a feedback from an agent that got me fuming mad, only to realise a day later that she was absolutely right. I changed my manuscript and that became my debut novel! 


What are your tips for meeting agents? Or are you nervous for an upcoming one-to-one? Join for free and share your one-to-one stories in the Townhouse here. 


Sarah x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Agent Submission Pack review service (Discounts available for members) 


Get professional Feeback on your opening 10,000 words, your cover letter, and your synopsis from one of our expert editors.  


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary closes 29 December 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before 29 December.  


The Writer, the Plotter, the Editor and you – final webinar (Exclusive to members) 


12 December. Join Holly Dawson for the final part of this course looking at the many different hats a writer has to wear. Members can catch up on the other parts of the course on replay now.  


Around the world in words 


Although our office with the tricky gate is based down a cobbled street in Oxford, our team, our editors and our members are based all around the world. And how lovely a thing it is to be connected to people so far and wide, at a time our physical space is measured in two-meter gaps. 


So in this newsletter, take a whistle-stop global tour with us across all seven continents. Starting first by welcoming our new members from around the world! 


WEBINAR: Flash Fiction Workshop - IRELAND (Exclusive for members) 


TOMORROW. Join Trinity College Dublin professor and Irish writer Kevin Power tomorrow, as he explores the benefits of writing short-form fiction. 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE


 

This week at Jericho Writers:


WEBINAR: From query to publication in a pandemic – USA (Exclusive for members) 


7 December. Two US authors who published their debut books in 2020 discuss the path leading up to their book release (and after). This webinar will take place at a US-friendly time! 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE



BLOG: Peter Papathanasiou’s path to publication – GREECE, AUSTRALIA, USA, UK 


Peter has lived around the world and sought publication across continents. This is his story on finding multiple publishers in different countries.  


READ NOW 


WEBINAR: Debi Alper’s Book Doctor Surgery – UK (Exclusive for members) 


5 December. A not-to-be-missed opportunity to bring your story issues to one of the best editors in the world. All writing woes welcome in this webinar! 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE



Looking forward to a global 2021 


2020 has shown us that distance can mean both everything and nothing at all. Whilst we’ve stepped back from seeing loved ones in real life, many of us have also reached out further than we might have ever done before – stepping up our video call game and connecting with people in different timezones.  


We’re super-proud to have such a diverse and far-reaching membership here at Jericho Writers. Our members reach across all seven continents around the world (yes – even Antartica!) Our brilliant editors are also scattered all over the globe, bringing all-important market insight to Australasia, Europe, Asia and the USA and Canada. If you drop our Writer Support Team a line, you might also notice French, Maltese, Welsh and Northern-English accents! 


2021 promises to have much more on a global scale. We’re pleased to welcome writer and Publisher’s Lunch reporter, Erin Somers, to the team, who is already commissioning some exciting content for members, giving us a key insight into the US market. We’ve also been widening the net of our expert editors and all be adding ex-commissioning editors and agents from around the world to our list very soon. 


So – where are you from? What’s the writing and publishing scene like in your area? Say hello and connect to writers for free in the Townhouse here! 


Sarah x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary closes 29 December 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before 29 December.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Agent 1-2-1 sessions now OPEN for December (Discounts available for members) 


These sessions can sell out in a matter of hours, so nab yours while you can! Includes a 15-minute phone call based on your work with a literary agent or book doctor based in the UK, US and Europe. 


And finally... a big welcome to the new members who joined us over the weekend! It’s incredibly lovely to have you on board – and at such an exciting time, too x

How to write a killer crime novel 

I’m going to level with you – I’m not the expert on writing crime fiction. Fortunately, we have internationally bestselling crime author Harry Bingham on our team, who really IS the expert. This newsletter features brand new content and Harry’s top tips on how to write a frightfully good crime, mystery or suspense novel.  


WEBINAR: Reading like a writer – USA (Exclusive for members) 


TODAY! In the first of many USA-edition webinars, we'll unpick the inner workings of brilliant books with Lynn Steger Strong. A masterclass in syntax, word choice, and how, from the first sentence, the writer is teaching us what is to come. 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE



This week at Jericho Writers: 


REPLAY: Building your crime novel (Exclusive for members) 


A good crime novel is tightly plotted, formal in construction – yet needs to deliver at least one major detonation of surprise. In this workshop, we work on identifying and assembling the elements that go into a crime novel and uncover techniques that work across all genres. 

LOGGED-IN MEMBER LINK 

NON-MEMBER LINK


BLOG: Tips for writing crime fiction and thrillers 


Harry Bingham’s top ten tips for writing crime fiction and thrillers that will please the reader and make publishers reach for their cheque books.  


READ NOW


WEBINAR: In conversation with Ruth Ware (Exclusive for members) 


27 November. Join international bestselling crime thriller author Ruth Ware for an evening in conversation, covering everything from writing, to publishing, to film, TV and translation. 


MEMBERS - REGISTER NOW 

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE 



On Writing Crime Fiction (by Harry Bingham) 


Crime fiction is a beautiful genre, simultaneously formal and elastic, dark but joyous, grave but full of laughter. (And corpses.) 


And for me, two things stand at the very centre of any crime novel. The first is the protagonist, usually the detective. Get this right – Sherlock Holmes, Tom Ripley, Lisbeth Salander – and readers will flock to any new novel or story without especially caring about the setup of that new story. All that matters is that the character walks again. 


The second element of the crime novel is a little more delicate in construction. It’s the dual view you need to deliver: the crime situation as understood by the police and the actual truth of the situation. The first view needs to look compelling and persuasive to any ordinary reader. If the coppers at Scotland Yard are just idiots, there’s no huge pleasure in seeing them thwarted. On the contrary, the reader needs to feel that the police-view of the situation is the complete truth… while also knowing that the detective is seeing more and further – and from the same set of clues. 


This method of construction works perfectly well for the kind of crime novels I write – regular police procedural bounded by a murder at one end, and a denouement at the other. But they work well for pretty much any other type of novel that includes both a mystery and an investigation. So Gillian Flynn’s ‘Gone Girl’ wasn’t a classic detective novel – the protagonists were the criminal and her victim. But the joy of the novel was that it painted one convincing view of reality in the first half of the book (the ‘police view’ if you like), then demolished that view in the brutal second half of the book. A glorious achievement. 


Do you use this method in your writing? Who are your all-time favourite detective characters? Join the ‘Crime, Mystery and Thriller’ group in the Townhouse. 


Harry B 



Plus, don’t miss: 


New members welcome webinar (Exclusive to members)  


30 November. New to Jericho Writers? Put your questions to the team and meet other members in this friendly webinar. No question is too big or small! We’ll also give you a sneak preview about what’s coming up in 2021... 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary closes 29 December 


Every quarter, we give one space on the life-changing Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course with Debi Alper to a deserved under-represented writer. To bag a free spot on January’s course, submit your application before 29 December.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that.

The tricky line between ‘showing’ and ‘telling’ in your writing 


I could tell you what’s in this newsletter... Or, I could show you.  



FREE WEBINAR: Live editing with Harry Bingham – Open to non-members! 


19 November. Want to see what happens if you get your work edited live on-screen by Harry Bingham? Harry will take a selection of your work and show what he would do with it if he were self-editing it. Open to members and non-members – bring your friends!  


REGISTER NOW



This week at Jericho Writers: 


MASTERCLASS: How to write a sentence (FREE for members)

 

Join Hal Duncan as he delves into the inner workings of sentence structure, including how to master rhythm and avoid too much ‘showing’.  

LOGGED IN MEMBER LINK 

NON-MEMBER LINK


BLOG: Show, Don’t Tell 


What exactly is the difference between Showing and Telling? Is “Showing” always right? And is Telling always wrong?  


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WEBINAR: Show Don’t Tell LIVE (Exclusive to members) 


TODAY! Join editor Rebecca Horsfall as she workshops member’s problem passages to help you master that all-important ‘rule’ to show, not tell.  


MEMBERS: WATCH NOW 


NON-MEMBERS: FIND OUT MORE 



The problem with writing ‘rules’  


Show, don’t tell. Write drunk, edit sober. The road to hell is paved with adverbs. 


We’ve heard these writing rules so much they’ve become cliché. And whilst they all hold a nugget of useful truth in them – rules are there to be broken.  


The purpose of the rule ‘show, don’t tell’ is that new writers tend to fall into the trap of telling the reader what’s going on, rather than showing it to them. As kids, we wrote diary entries beginning: ‘today, I went to the park and it was fun’. Whereas as writers, we should be going for something more like: ‘the wind stung my smile as I swung higher’.  


It's the same with ‘write drunk, edit sober’. Of course, a glass of wine on your desk can be a great motivator, but this rule alludes more to the idea that first drafts should be uninhibited. And I’m with Stephen King on adverbs.  


Sometimes though, we need to tell. We need to let the reader know some important bit of information, without turning it all into a whole paragraph of description, or backstory. Sometimes we need to sober up and reconsider the direction our wacky first-draft is going in. And - okay - maybe the odd adverb is okay for dialogue? (She said, quietly). 


So – over to you. What do you think of writing rules? Which ones do you follow, and which ones do you delight in breaking? Sign up for free and join the writer rebellion in the Townhouse here.  


Sarah J x 


Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary now open 


Entries are now open for the already sold-out Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course in January with Debi Alper. All under-represented writers are invited to apply for this free place.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Complete Novel Mentoring (Discounts available for members) 


Write or edit your book alongside one of our expert mentors, including multi-bestselling authors and commissioning editors. 

Short wordcount – high bar 

When written well, short stories can squeeze entire lives into just a few thousand words. They can be as rich and complex as a novel but can be consumed by a reader in one sitting. This newsletter looks at literary techniques you can use to create brilliant short stories and highlights some upcoming competitions for you to send them off to once they’re done.  


WEBINAR: Writing displacement with Elaine Chew (Exclusive to members)


TODAY! This workshop will use a theoretical framework of diaspora and literary examples to explore how fiction writers can reflect themes of home vs displacement in their writing. 


MEMBERS - REGISTER 

NON-MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE 


This week at Jericho Writers:


REPLAY: 10 ways to start a short story (Exclusive to members) 


This session covers different approaches to short story writing, illustrated by classic stories and topped off with some tips from award-winning story writer Dan Brotzel.  


MEMBERS - WATCH NOW

NON-MEMBERS - JOIN US TO WATCH


BLOG: "Tiny windows into other worlds" - Why we should write short stories.


To celebrate her recent short story competition win, we asked our own Miriam to write a passion piece on short-form fiction. It also contains a difficult prompt, for those who love a good writing challenge! 


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FEEDBACK: Ask Jericho is now doing phone calls! (Exclusive to members) 


If members need feedback on their query letter or have a burning question that needs answering – our dedicated Member Support Team are now available for calls, as well as email feedback. All included in the membership!


MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE

NON MEMBERS - FIND OUT MORE 


Short story competitions with deadlines soon 


TripFiction ‘Sense of Place’ competition 

Deadline 15 November. This competition costs £5/$7 to enter and has three prizes of up to £300/$400. The word count is max. 3000 words and must include a strong sense of place. There are some cool resources to help you write that on the website, too.  


The Masters Chapbook Award 

Deadline 15 November. A great one here for those of you with a short story collection, this prize wants to see cohesive, unpublished manuscripts between 25-40 pages. The entry fee is a steep $25, but the prize is a cool $3,000, plus publication and other cool stuff.  


Neilma Sidney Short Story Prize 

Deadline 16 November. This Australia-based prize is open to international writers with stories under 3,000 words on the subject of ‘travel’. There’s an entry fee of between $12-$20 AUD and three prizes – the top being $5,000 AUD and publication.  


Wild Atlantic Writing Award 

Deadline 10 December. Open to fiction and creative non-fiction up to 500 words on the theme of ‘nature’ in any genre. Entry is €10 and the prize is €500. 


Do you write short stories? If so, join the Townhouse for free and connect with fellow writers in our Short Story Exchange group. Good luck if you enter any of these competitions! Let us know how you get on. 


Sarah J x



Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary now open 

Entries are now open for the already sold-out Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course in January with Debi Alper. All under-represented writers are invited to apply for this free place.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 

Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Complete Novel Mentoring (Discounts available for members) 

Write or edit your book alongside one of our expert mentors, including multi-bestselling authors and commissioning editors. 

How to write a book in a month, the NaNoWriMo way 

If you haven’t heard of it before, National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo) is an international effort from writers all over the world to write 50,000 words in just 30 days. If you’re planning to write 1,667 words a day this month, this newsletter is packed with the inspiration, motivation and tips to keep you going. Good luck!


WEBINAR: Submissions open for Show Don’t Tell LIVE (FREE) 


17 November 2020. Members are invited to submit problem passages to be workshopped by superstar editor Rebecca Horsfall LIVE in this webinar. This session was a huge hit at the Summer Festival of Writing and this is your chance to see it applied to your own work. Submit a page of your writing to submissions@jerichowriters.com with the subject line: SHOW DON'T TELL LIVE. 

MEMBERS: LINK TO REGISTER 

NON-MEMBERS: FIND OUT MORE 


This week at Jericho Writers 


REPLAY: Seven productivity myths (FREE for members) 


What’s stopping you from writing? Join Becca Syme, Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach and Author Success Coach, to find out how you can boost your productivity and keep writing this month.  


LOGGED IN MEMBER LINK 

JOIN US TO WATCH


BLOG: How to create character arcs – New! 


This new blog from Dr Sharon Zink is – in my opinion – one the most important you’ll read when starting on a new story of any kind. Read it, download the free worksheet, and see how a plot can be born from character! 


READ NOW


AGENT ONE-TO-ONE SESSIONS are back!

Want to get direct feedback on your work from industry experts? Book a fifteen-minute phone call with one of our top literary agents. We have a brand new selection, but hurry - these always sell out quickly!

BOOK NOW



Top tips for NaNoWriMo (from someone who has done it) 


Writing a novel in a month sounds a little bit impossible. Really though, it’s a way of setting a goal and connecting with people who share that target, in the hope you can all help each other smash it.  


I did NaNoWriMo in 2012 with a book that I wanted to write but kept putting off due to work and social commitments. Joining NaNoWriMo connected me with an international base of writers who were all stupid enough to try to do the same thing. We found each other online and in-person (back when such a thing was possible). I made friends, swapped ideas and moaned about how difficult it was, to people who understood. 


So the first tip – connect with people who are also doing NaNoWriMo. We have a group you can join for free in the Townhouse. You can also join the hashtag on social media – especially on Twitter – where you’ll find people setting writing sprints and celebrating each other’s word counts.  


The next tip is to give yourself a break. Life will at some point get in the way and interrupt your word count. Don’t let that stop you. Keep going. Try to catch up another day. Reward yourself with treats, exercise and other fun stuff. 


It feels wonderful to watch your word count go up and up in November. Don’t worry if those words are awful – this is very much the point of NaNoWriMo. Write words without worry. Get your ideas down. Making them make sense is December’s problem... 


Are you doing NaNoWriMo this year? Then join the Townhouse for free and say hello in the NaNoWriMo group! 


Sarah J x 



Plus, don’t miss: 


Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course bursary now open 


Entries are now open for the already sold-out Self-Edit Your Novel tutored course in January with Debi Alper. All under-represented writers are invited to apply for this free place.  


Manuscript Assessment  (Discounts available for members) 


Our most popular editorial service matches you to your dream editor and gives you tailored feedback on your work. It doesn’t get better than that. 


Complete Novel Mentoring (Discounts available for members)


Write or edit your book alongside one of our expert mentors, including multi-bestselling authors and commissioning editors.

 

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