Monday, 27 of March 2023

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Hour of Writes

The following is from Alison Ireland who has set up a new website called Hour of Writes.

Hour of Writes is designed to be a peaceful space – a blank piece of paper – in the busy online world, where you can find time to write down, share and structure your thoughts, in the context of a life which often has other priorities.

The focus point is an hour-long writing competition each week (with a cash prize). Sometimes, when variables are controlled, the mind’s creativity is able to flourish. It feels like freedom.

Interested? We’re currently asking other like-minded writers from all over the world to pre-register as founder members before the public launch of the site, and to help us with the testing phase: Write to us if you want to be involved!

Hour of Writes is also producing a series of articles about creative writing, and how people relate creative writing practice to their private, work and social lives. Some of the material for these pieces comes from a big survey we’re conducting, of writers and writing groups all over the world:

In return for completing the survey, we’ll give you a free credit (competition entry) to use on the Hour of Writes website following its launch this Spring – instructions are at the end of the survey. We’ll also send you the articles mentioned above as they’re published.

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2014 Bristol Short Story Prize

2014 Bristol Short Story Prize is open to all published and unpublished writers over 16 years of age.
Stories can be on any theme or subject and
entry can be made online via the website or by
post. Entries must be previously unpublished
with a maximum length of 4,000 words (There is no minimum). The
entry fee is £8 per story.
The closing date for entries is midnight (BST) April 30th 2014.

1st £1000 plus £150 Waterstone’s gift card
2nd £700 plus £100 Waterstone’s gift card
3rd £400 plus £100 Waterstone’s gift card
17 further prizes of £100 will be presented to the writers
whose stories appear on the shortlist. All 20 shortlisted
writers will have their stories published in the Bristol Short
Story Prize Anthology Volume 7.

The 20 shortlisted writers will be invited to an awards ceremony
in Bristol in October 2014 when the winners will be announced and the anthology launched.
Prizes will be sent to any writer unable to attend the awards ceremony.

Judging panel :
Sara Davies (writer, former BBC Radio 4 producer) Rowan Lawton (literary agent at Furniss Lawton),
Sanjida O’Connell (writer and TV presenter) and Nikesh Shukla (author, performer and journalist)

Full details and rules at

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Creative Writing bursaries

For the third year running Sky, in association with IdeasTap, is giving away five £30,000
bursaries and mentoring support to talented artists aged 18-30 from the UK and
Ireland. Find out more and apply at

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The New Writer re-launches

The New Writer has now relaunched and the whole of the latest issue can be viewed at
while elsewhere on the site you can order a half price print copy.

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Bursary for arts students and recent graduates

£9,000 bursary for current arts students and recent graduates

Uni Fee Fund

Saddled by student debt? Whether you’re a first-year student or a graduate, if you embarked on a BA or BMus in 2006* or later, you could benefit from having £9,000 wiped off your Student Loans Company balance by arts charity IdeasTap.

For a chance to win, simply tell us in 100 words or less what you could offer to IdeasTap’s network in exchange for the money.

It could be an idea or a service, for example “This is how you could improve your site…” or “I’ll run this Spa event for your members…” ­

the more imaginative, original and feasible the idea, the better!


Find out more and apply by 29 March at

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Mouseman – influence the development of a book

Members might be interested in the unusual way Mark Woodward is launching his new novel, Mouseman. While most readers simply read a book, Mouseman offers readers a chance not only to voice their opinions directly to the author, but to influence the development of the book through their comments and criticisms. The book will be published initially in five weekly episodes, available both from Amazon and as free PDF from his website. As the story progresses, readers will be invited to post their questions, comments and criticisms on the Mouseman Facebook page, and he will post his responses in return. The page will reflect the whole range of opinion - he won’t censor it to remove the comments that are less than complimentary! When all five episodes have been posted, the book will be revised and published as a single-volume ebook and paperback.

Book description:

Mouseman is a comic, dark and unsettling novel, exploring the social and sexual dysfunction of men through the life of MM, its obsessive narrator. MM’s only relief from the strange world of Beech Brothers, the eccentric tenants of Mrs Flynn and the mice that keep him awake at night are his visits to the mysterious Roseanna. He lies on her couch and tells her about his first and only girlfriend, Suzanne, his schoolfriend, Nick, and his troubled boyhood. But his stories grow darker and more disturbing, and start to seep into the real world…

The first three chapters of Mouseman were shortlisted for the 2012 Yeovil Literary Prize.

Mouseman is being published in five weekly episodes available from Amazon and as a free PDF from the Writing Idol website.

Tell the author what you think – post your comments on the Mouseman Facebook page!

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Midlands author Brian Grove hosts list of publishers accepting submissions

Brian Grove, a UK author based in Stourbridge, has a helpful website with lots of help for writers.

He lists publishers who are open to submissions, do take a look:

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Tindal Street Press recruiting a Publicity and Marketing Assistant / Officer

Job title: Publicity and Marketing Assistant / Officer
Location: Birmingham
Closing date: 25 May 2012

Please see the website for details


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Creative opportunity for young (16-19) poets in the West Midlands

We’re IdeasTap: an online platform that helps young people break into the creative industries. We offer advice, a space to network, funding and workshops to enable emerging artists to develop their talent. We’re also a charity – so we offer all this for free.

 We wanted to let you know about a rather special opportunity for young creative folk in the West Midlands that we currently have on our site, which we hope will appeal to some of the talented people you work with.

 Future Poets Festival

Along with Writing West Midlands and the Midlands Arts Centre, we’re looking for 8 creative individuals aged 16-19 to work together over five months to create a one-day Future Poets Festival.

 They’ll get to attend workshops with poets, artists, theatre-makers and performers,where they’ll learn how to run a festival and will get mentoring on their own work too. They will then curate a mini-festival at mac on 4 August. Find out more and apply.

 Please do pass this information on to anyone you think might be interested.

 If you’d like to learn more about IdeasTap and how we can help emerging artists, visit us as You can also get in touch with us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Fierce Festival, Birmingham (UK) – April 2012 Call for Participants


Fierce Festival are seeking participants for the third instalment of performance/installation, “Gifts of the Spirit: Automatic Writing” by internationally acclaimed live artist ,Ron Athey.

The performance will take place on the 7th of April 2012, and there will be a full two day training workshop on the 4th and 5th to prepare you for the event, with some additional time on the 6th 

dedicated to training for the Glossalalia chorus (more details below).

The workshop and the performance will take place in Birmingham as part of the Fierce Festival – the city’s annual international festival of live art and performance.Your participation is voluntary, and you will be responsible for organising your own travel for the duration of the workshop and performance.
 All participants will be eligible to purchase concession rate tickets for other shows in the festival: 


 Performance experience is not needed, only an interest in publicly exploring automatism.

We will need: 

 Automatic Writers: Take the concept of ‘stream-of-consciousness’ writing and push it two steps further. Will be required to attend workshop and technical. 
 Typists: will transcribe auto-text from handwritten cut-outs, on old fashioned manual typewriters. 
Editors: editors who can put together fragments of auto-text and string them into shape for reading.

It is essential that you understand and consent to undergoing hypnotic inductions for the development and performance of this automatic writing process.
This will be done with recordings and a hypnotist, the idea being to access the subconscious and synchronise as a group.
Please contact Lisa Newman of 2 Gyrlz Performative Arts at with any questions and to submit your request for participation.
Please send a brief description of your interest in the project, why you’re interested in participating, and any experience you’ve had either with art or stream of consciousness/automatic writing. As stated above, previous experience is not necessary.If you are selected, you will be sent an email of confirmation for your place. Many thanks and we look forward to hearing from you soon!






Glossalalia chorus: performers/vocalists who are interested in exploring different modes of ecstatic vocalizations.


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