Saturday, April 12, 2014

This and that . . .

Today is the 12th April  so it's the date for my regular post over on the Tote Bags 'N' Blogs  blog site.

Today I'm talking about a job I thought I never wanted to do  - and that now I find I'm doing - and actually enjoying . And no, it's not writing romance!  But it is connected with the republication of the 12 Point Guide To Writing Romance.

Which reminds me - the special introductory price for this book has been a great success - but it's now coming to an end.   If you want to get the book for the amazing price of £0.77 or $0.99, you need to act now!

Oh yes - and there's a great review of the 12 Point Guide over on the Pink Heart Society blog today., My thanks go to Michelle Styles for the great write up - I have to admit that I love the idea of  the book being
'classic text on writing series romance'!

Friday, April 11, 2014

More on Courses - what's coming up?


So, to answer those questions about what courses are coming up  - and what they'll   contain -

I have two 'basic' courses coming up in 2014. These are the courses for someone who has never been on a course on writing romantic fiction before.  They cover the essentials of writing  romantic fiction - well, really any sort of fiction.


They take the information  given in the 12 Point Guide To Writing Romance and  add in extra depth, writing exercises, time for Q&A s and discussion.  There's also plenty of time to relax and talk with your fellow students, discuss the topics in the workshops - and to work on your own novels.    That's why they are Relax and Write or  Writers' Holidays. You get a break as well as learning.

Dates - 16th - 18th May 2014  _arrival from 3pm on the Friday afternoon
These courses are informal and fun.





The first one coming up is the Relax and Write course which is being held at Weetwood Hall  in Leeds.  

Cost: £240

Every student who books on this course will be able to have their own single room for privacy and relaxation - and of course to write!
All meals - from Friday Dinner to Sunday Breakfast - are provided as are tea and coffee. 
There are 9 teaching sessions ( 45 mins - 1 hour)  and time to relax/write/dream is built into the course
.





TOPICS TO BE COVERED IN THE PROGRAMME:
·         Creating realistic characters
·         Sustaining pace and conflict
·         Packing emotional punch
·         Writing sex scenes
·         Crafting a satisfactory ending.
If you’re just starting out writing romance, or you’ve written a manuscript or two but are not yet published and are interested in honing your skills, this course is for you.

Because the numbers on this course are kept small to keep it relaxed and informal,  spaces are limited & demand has been high.  But we have recently added a couple of extra places so if you want to join us, there are still spaces. To book contact   Write and Relax    organiser Lois Bird Maddox  through her web site - or  further details on my Events page.
Also on this weekend is the course  
Creative Writing & the Art of Self-Discovery - with Stephen Wade  and introduction to journalling and  the ways it can help you in your writing.


Non-participating partners welcome.


The other basic course I run has always been  at one my favourite events and places of the year - when the Babe Magnet  and I head for Wales  - again  - and join the wonderful Anne & Gerry Hobbs and all the  other tutors and students at - well,  up until now it has been at  Caerleon but this year the venue has changed  - and as a result, the format of the event has changed slightly too.  It may be held at Fishguard now, with slightly different time schedule and dates - But this is still Writers' Holiday and I'm so looking forward to it again this year.

Writers' Holiday 
Monday 21st July -  Saturday 26th July 2014
Cost £499
So  this Writers' Holiday will mean a week in the Fishguard Bay Hotel,  with wonderful views of the sea - inspiration is bound to strike!   Delegates will choose two courses from a selection of eight. Each course will
consist of eight, one hour lectures or workshops and will run during the mornings and afternoons, Tuesday - Friday.

All meals are provided - together with tea and coffee -  so as always, all you'll need is the cash to spend in the bookroom - or the bar!

The format of the course will be very much as above - but this time there will be the rest of the week to either choose and take another course if you want. There are After Tea sessions and of course the annual visit of the Cwmbach Male Voice Choir
Again, non writing partners are welcome and  information is provided of activities and places to visit in  the area for anyone who is not doing a course.

This years' Writers' Holiday was booked up but there have been a  couple of unexpected cancellations  so if you're interested  contact Gerry  on the web site  and you might just get a place.   Again, there are  details on my Events Page.

These two courses mean that you'll be well prepared to attend the Advance Romance Writing Course in Fishguard in February 2015 if you want to.

So those are the two basic courses - I'll post some more details of other events coming up - including special writing retreat weekends  as soon as I can.


Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Books and Courses

Thank you so very much to everyone who has helped to make the relaunch of  the 12 Point Guide in ebook such a huge success. I've been thrilled by the interest these has been in this book, and watching  it being downloaded in large numbers day after day has been fantastic.

It ended up at #1 on the Amazon lists for Writing skills on both amazon.co.uk  and amazon.com  and it's been up there ever since.   So a great big thank you to everyone who contributed to this - the friends and fellow authors who shared the news on Facebook and Twitter and the readers who down loaded  it so enthusiastically.  I've really appreciated it.

Of course, there has been a different sort of response to this  new interest in the book - I  said when I wrote it that my aim was to try and  give something of the feeling of being at one of my courses, to work through the most important points about writing romantic fiction (in fact, any sort of fiction - as one of the comments in the book says, even while directed specifically at romance,  this workbook can be used to help anyone who wants to write fiction).  I know that many people can't get to a course because they just can't get to one,  because they don 't have the spare  time, or the spare cash to  dedicate  even a  weekend to themselves and their writing.  I understand this. After all, it's why I wrote the 12 Point Guide in the first place.

But I'm getting messages from people  who have bought the book - and/or who have decided that this year is the year that they'll really focus on their writing  - and they want to know whether they would benefit from attending a course. They also want to know what  they could get from a course that the 12 Point Book, and its writing exercises, can't do.

I could answer myself -  my answers would be that the direct contact is such a valuable thing. Contact with your tutor so that you can ask direct question, go back over things you don 't understands. Contact with others who want to write   - and who want to write the same thing as you .  Contact that means you can discuss your writing with others who are at the same point as you, who have the same worries and doubts about what you're doing.  And that's  before you consider the fun and laughter - and sharing - and chocolate - and , yes post-it notes!  - that  are part of a course - for me anyway.

But don 't just take my word for it. I asked  my students from this year's Advanced Writing Romance Course at Fishguard what they got out of the  weekend they spent with me in Wales in February this yea
Fishguard Bay Hotel 
r.  Here are some of the replies:

I find that writing courses give me a goal to aim for in terms of submitting finished work because otherwise, being unpublished, there are no real deadlines and it’s difficult to stay motivated. I also love getting feedback on my work, and being able to focus on nothing but writing for a whole weekend is pure indulgence. Discussing romance with other people who have a genuine love for the genre is fantastic too, but the greatest benefit I get is that I come home buzzing with ideas, really inspired and re-energised.    Jo

As someone who has only just plucked up the courage to attend a writing course and expose my efforts to others, I couldn't have picked a better course. Not only did I learn lots but also everyone was so welcoming and friendly and we had a good laugh. It's just great to share ideas and experiences with like-minded people; I would highly recommend Kate's course to anyone who dreams of becoming a romantic novelist!    Claire


Kate's courses are special. They give me a chance to learn from an author who has had in excess of 60 books published, books I love. She gives her time generously and enthusiastically and every time, I'm inspired to do better. The classes are small and very friendly, so everyone feels able to contribute.  Sarah

Weetwood Hall  
I'm so complimented by these comments  - they remind me why I run these courses too.

So, if you're interested in coming on one of my course, watch this space - I'll tel you about the ones I have coming up.  There are weekends for all stages of your writing - beginners,  the special Advanced course in Fishguard - and newly decided on are writing retreats where you can concentrate on your  novel, with advice, input and help - and a detailed one-to-one  session too.  There are some details on my Events page - or you can find out more from Writer's Holiday 
or the Relax and Write websites

Maybe I'll see you at one of them.

Saturday, April 05, 2014

The Big News

So, finally, I can make a full announcement of my big news  (though if you've been on Facebook today, you'll have spotted this already!)

I have just published a  new edition of my award-winning  (Cata-Romance Best Book For Writers), bestselling  (3 editions sold out) book on how to write romance - Kate Walker's 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance - in an ebook version.

As of today, this edition is out on Kindle and is available at a very special introductory sale price of  just  77 pence (in the UK) and  for $1.28 on Amazon.com.  This is an amazing saving for anyone in America or Canada, where the kindle version  hasn't been available and I've seen the print edition at the ridiculous price of  $29.50 !! (or even -  a 'used ' price of $83.60!!!! (You have to be joking! I could ship out a print edition for  less than either of these prices). At long last I've even been able to make it easily available in Australia too . So  if you've been looking for a chance to get hold of a copy of  this book  - or you could never find a Kindle edition  - here it is!

This book has nine 5 star reviews on Amazon - and  there's a wonderful long review of it on my web site  Writers' page.

I've been asked if there is new information or advice in the book - basically, the answer is no - if you have a copy of the 2nd or 3rd editions,  (see the illustration - the last time I'll be using this image) then the same information is in those. But I have revised this new ebook edition to reflect the new names for some of the lines (KISS, Modern Tempted etc) and I do plan to make sure that the ebook is available in other formats too if you don't have Kindle.

This special introductory price is available for  just a week  - after that the price will go up to its proper published price  - but that will still be w-a-y lower than  even the £10+ charged for the last one.

This is the book that I wrote to answer as many questions as I could from the students who had been on my courses - both actual and on-line.   It's aimed at helping as many would-be authors as I can.  I still run the courses - with Writers' Holiday and now with Relax and Write. There are spaces on those still available at the moment (see my Events Page for details)  but if you can't make it one of them - or you don't live in the UK - or can't afford the cost or the time - this book will give you  so much of what is in those courses. (Without of course the post-it notes, the chocolate, the laughter . . .)

Oh yes - and if you  don't actually write romantic fiction , don't think this book is not for you -   Dr Karen Maitland (Creative Writing Tutor, Adult Education and author of Company of LiarsThe Gallows Curse etc)  says this:

I regularly recommend the Twelve Point Guide to Writing Romance to my Creative Writing Students. I'm glad to say, they all agree it is one of the most helpful books they've read on writing and works for all types of fiction.   I think writers from beginners to experienced writers get solid practical advice from this book which is both clear, logical and jargon-free and as one of my more down-to-earth male students said, 'makes you actually get on and write.'




Romantic Fiction is big business. This book will provide information and advice for anyone who wants to learn how to write romantic novels.

Kate Walker’s 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance brings together all Kate’s expertise as a successful romantic novelist with over sixty titles in print all over the world. It will give the aspiring novelist the essential skills needed to master this hugely popular genre , but it is also an invaluable handbook for more experienced writers. The 12 Point Guide is more than just a how-to book; it’s also a practical workbook with exercises to help you learn the important skills she discusses, and advice on how to understand and apply the storytelling techniques demanded by the romance genre.

Topics covered in this book include:
• Creating and writing the emotion needed in your story
• Building characters that come to vivid life on the page
• Developing and sustaining the conflict between your hero and heroine to build a page-turning plot.
• Writing intimate, passionate and sensual love scenes
• Submitting your manuscript and working with editors.

Kate Walker’s 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance brings together all Kate’s expertise as a successful romantic novelist with over sixty titles in print all over the world. It will give the aspiring novelist the essential skills needed to master this hugely popular genre , but it is also an invaluable handbook for more experienced writers. The 12 Point Guide is more than just a how-to book; it’s also a practical workbook with exercises to help you learn the important skills she discusses, and advice on how to understand and apply the storytelling techniques demanded by the romance genre.

Published for  thirty years, award-winning author Kate Walker’s novels for Harlequin Presents are sold in over 50 different countries worldwide, and they regularly appear on the romance bestseller charts. She is an experienced tutor and has taught many day and weekend courses on writing romance.


I can't end this post without sending very special thanks to Lee Hyat of Author Sound Relations who helped me prepare the book for ebook publication  - and who designed that fantastic cover for this new edition.  Thank you for  everything, Lee.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Pink Hearts Day


Today's the first Friday of the month - which means that I'm posting my regular blog over on the
Pink Heart Society blog.
What am I talking about?  Well, it is National Stationery Week -  and most writers seem to be addicted to stationery!

If you're still waiting for the news about

Well I'm told it's moved a stage closer  - and hopefully I'll be able to let you know more this weekend. (Perhaps just as well, it didn't get sorted out earlier this week as you might have thought it was an April Fool!) 
I'll tell all as soon as I can.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

New Books

Still waiting for the final details of the exciting news  hopefully I'll be able to tell you all very soon. But in the meantime today's good news was coming home to find a large parcel waiting for me. Brand new copies of the Presents edition of A Question of Honour.  (Ooops - no - sorry, seeing as this is the USA edition -

it's A Question of Honor!

This is one of my favourite moments of being a writer - the arrival of  the first editions of my book.

Another  bit of happy news was discovering that two much older books  - like  - books that were published in 2003 originally - are in the daily  Mills & Boon bestseller list on Amazon.co.uk  

It's great to see  The Married Mistress   and Wife for A Day selling so well in ebook ten years after they first came out in paperback in the UK.

And personally I'm getting a lot of satisfaction from seeing  Wife for A Day  there - with its  British hero!

Do you still love the Mediterranean hero - of do you miss the British guy  with his stiff upper lip?

I do wonder if it's time to admit that a British hero can be every bit as sexy and romantic as a Greek Billionaire or a Sheikh.

What do you think?

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Exciting news

I'm really excited about this - I've been wanting to share this with everyone  for - well, it seems like ages but it's actually three months.

But it's felt like a long three months!

Anyway -  here's part one of my news, with special thanks to the lovely Lee Hyat at Author Sound Relations


More news to follow soon - watch this space!

 

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