October Ink Stains

There is a great deal to report with new courses (The Story and Prepare to Publish) beginning to fill up (see below), The Instant Hook Contest submissions coming in (Deadline: December 31, rules and regulations: here) as well as several books by alumni and friends being released in very close succession.

First a recap: several months ago I asked advice from romance writers Kate Robbins, Robin St. Croix, and Victoria Barbour about how to shed my non-romance writer self and plunge into this popular genre.

Well I managed it for about a page and a half before falling off the romance wagon and plummeting into decidedly unromantic themes and scenarios. Setting this aside for a bit as I gird up my loins (so to speak) for another go, I thought I would see what could be gleaned from the hard work and ingenuity of these authors when it comes to marketing their work. Take a look, for example, at this trailer for Robin’s romance, Masquerade — an intriguing way to mix the literary medium with film.

Although they are all based in one Canadian province (Newfoundland and Labrador), these authors have achieved international success through a combination of highly professional writing and innovative marketing techniques. They are also part of a collective Romancing the Rock which has numerous success stories — so numerous in fact I can barely keep up with them. A collective makes such good sense for writers who are, by nature, the shyest of creative artists; each author’s publicity becomes the other authors’ publicity and the result is a win-win situation for everybody.

We could all take a page from their book!


Upcoming HB Creativity Workshops

October 22, The Story, (3 hours, live), 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm, casa, Lethbridge (2 places remaining at time of writing). Learn how to pitch a story, and how to sustain conflict and suspense. We will explore plot, character development, style, sentence structure, the use of different tenses, point of view, and dramatic tension. Call 403 915 7685 or email paul.butler@nl.rogers.com.

November 26 & December 3, Prepare to Publish, (2 live 3-hour sessions), 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm, casa, Lethbridge. (3 places remaining at time of writing). Build a strategy for matching your work to a publisher and a marketplace. Learn how to look for the right fit, and how to entice a publisher with your blurb and biography. Learn to tell when  your manuscript is polished enough for submission.

Guided Online Writing Workshop Series (anywhere) is presently full but a limited number of spaces will open in early November 2016. Call 403 915 7685 or email paul.butler@nl.rogers.com if you wish to register.


Alumni and Friends News

Tara Nanayakkara‘s Dawning of a New Garden (Inanna, Toronto), a beautiful tale of bereavement and fresh hope is available everywhere.


Glenn Deir‘s The Money Shot, a wickedly funny tale of rivalries among journalists, will be officially launched at the Breakwater Books party on October 25 at the Masonic Temple in St. John’s, Newfoundland.


Bianca Lakoseljac‘s richly lyrical The Stone Woman
has been published by Guernica Editions (Toronto). Bianca has many appearances in Southern Ontario lined up this fall.


John Fleming is working on self-published comics along with Artist Collette Turner. Their first Kickstarter successfully raised $8000, their second one is launching early October. Here is a preview link.

Note: If you have had dealings with HB Creativity let me know of your upcoming publications!

Other news

Broken Earth Productions is presenting The Weir by Conor McPherson at the LSPU Hall in St. John’s, Newfoundland from November 1 to November 5. The production is directed by Leo Furey and the cast includes Mikaela Dyke, Aiden Flynn, Pete Soucy, Steve O’Connell, and Chris Pickard. Tickets can be purchased at 709 753-4531.


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