Newsletter August 2022
My biggest news this month has to be that on 23 August I attended a ceremony at the lovely Manchester Monastery where Talking About My Generation received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service. You can read the full report here.
And here is the gorgeous award itself:
It is currently touring our homes.
I’m now on draft fifteen of the sixth book in the Schellberg Cycle. I’m looking out for clichés. I’m blogging quite a lot about my editing process here on The House on Schellberg Street if you’re interested.
On Talking About My Generation I have a review of SoftLad , a play about young male vulnerability. An article about the Bolton Food Festival discusses how it’s good to see this festival up and running again. The Book Nest and Chit Chat Chair is the first in my series about indoor sociable spaces.
I’ve had a short story published on CafeLit: Vandals A young vandal gets his comeuppance. Or is it just karma?
On My Blog
I have quite a fewer author interviews this month on my blog:
The Best of CafeLit 11 contributors Jim Bates, Yvonne Lang, Dawn DeBraal and Mary Daurio talk about their experiences of writing for CafeLit.
Linda Flynn, William Wilson, Yvonne Walus and L F Roth tell us about their single author collections.
I discuss whether writing is an art, craft or science. I also challenge you to get reviewing.
In A Significant Holiday I tell you a little about my journey as a writer.
The Young Person’s Library
This month I’ve added:
Politeness for Penguins a lovely picture book with anthropomorphic and a lesson in manners for pre-schoolers.
Find Fergus by Elizabeth Dale and Becky Davies a fun emergent reader text.
Wicked Little Deeds by Kat Ellis This is a very tense thriller for YA.
Thursday’s Child by Noel Streatfeild A very engaging read for the fluent reader and a nostaligt one for th adults who like to read children’s books
Current reading recommendation
This month I’m recommending The Girl with Louding Voice by Abi Daré
Adunni dreams of becoming a teacher.
But it seems it is not to be. Her mother dies and her father marries her off so that he can earn some money. She faces several challenges but encounters a couple of friends on the way. There are some grave dangers. She has to escape the wrath of her husband. She finds employment but her boss is cruel and violent. She has to study hard at the same time as completing long hours of physical work.
Abi Daré certainly gives Audnni a “louding” voice and creates an authentic character here.
Note: these are usually mobi-files to be downloaded to a Kindle. Occasionally there are PDFs.
This month I’m offering a mobi-file of January Stones 2013
This is a collection of flash fiction, one piece written each day in January 2013.
They were originally published on my blog called Gill’s January Stones. In fact, they were published in reverse order. The first one you read here, When Physics Got Sick, was the last one to be written and originally published on 31 January 2016.
Sometimes the stories would come right at the beginning of the day. Sometimes they would take a while longer.
Do they have a theme? Not really, though the idea of ‘stones’ is one of turning them over slowly on the beach until we find the right one. It’s not a bad time of year, anyway, right at the beginning in January, as the New Year starts and the days slowly become longer.
There was no strict word count. Each story is as long as it needs to be. It had to be finished, though, by midnight of that day.
Find out more. Grab your copy and lots of other freebies here.
And please, please, please leave a review, perhaps on Amazon, Good Reads and / or Story Graph, when you’ve finished.
Note: Normally my books and the books supplied by the imprints I manage sell for anything from £0.99 to £10.99. Most on Kindle are about £2.99 and the average price for paperback is £7.00. Writers have to make a living. But I’m offering these free samples so that you can try before you buy.
The Schellberg Project
The posts may be helpful for teachers who are familiar with the Schellberg stories or who are teaching about the Holocaust. They may also be interesting for other readers of historical fiction.
Sometimes I also write about what might be useful to other writers.
I’ve added four posts this month.
This month I’ve discussed two books:
The Fuhrer’s Orphans : a moving and powerful novel based on true events by David Laws This give some insights into the Kindertransport and Hitler’s plan for a wide gauge railway.
Never Forget You by Jamila Gavin, also mentioned above, shows us some of the roles young women took on during World War II.
I’ve also talked about my working process again in Draft 10 – Dialogue and in Drafts 11, 12 and 13 where I mention description, point of view and “show don’t tell”.
Some notes about my newsletters and blogs
They do overlap a little but here is a summary of what they all do.
Bridge House Authors For all those published by Bridge House, CaféLit, Chapeltown or The Red Telephone or interested in being published by us. General news about the imprints. News for writers. Links to book performance. Sign up here.
The Bridgetown Café Bookshop where you can buy my book and books published by Bridge House Publishing, CafeLit, Chapeltown Books and The Red Telephone. Visit us here.
Chapeltown Books News about our books. Sign up here.
The Creative Café Project News about the project and CaféLit – for the consumer rather than for the producer. Sign up here.
Gill’s News: News about my writing, The Schellberg Project, School Visits and Events. Book recommendations and giveaways. Find it here.
Pushing Boundaries, Flying Higher News about conferences and workshops to do with the young adult novel. (infrequent postings) Sign up here.
Red Telephone Books News about our books and our authors. Sign up here.
A Publisher’s Perspective Here I and some other editors blog as a publisher. Access this here.
The Creative Café Project Listings and reviews of creative cafés. See them here.
CaféLit Stories Find these here
Gill James Writer All about writing and about my books. View this here.
Gill’s Recommended Reads Find information here about books that have taken me out of my editor’s head and a reminder of the ones I’ve highlighted in this newsletter.
Gill’s Sample Fiction Read some of my fiction here.
The House on Schellberg Street All about my Schellberg project. Read it here.
Writing Teacher All about teaching creative writing. Some creative writing exercises. Access this here. I also invite other writers to provide prompts and work for critique.
Books Books Books Weekly offers on our books and news of new books. Find them here.
The Young Person’s Library The children’s book catalogue. Access it here.
Fair Submissions Find it here.
Opportunities for writers are added several times a day. Roughly once a month I send it out to a list. If you would like to be on that list, sign up here.
Happy reading and writing.
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