Need some deadlines and destinations?

There are many great sources of writing prompts and publication opportunities available, but I’ve found that using the following few is manageable and keeps me on track:

Aerogramme: I don’t know who the good people are behind this source of “Books and Writing | News and Resources”, but they do amazing work. An email subscription means only 2 – 4 emails per month and they’re packed with local and international competition and publication listings. Sometimes I’m overwhelmed by the disparity between the size of my portfolio of work that’s ready and the number of places open to submissions, but wouldn’t it be really awful if it was the other way around?

The Review Review: I subscribed to their newsletter in October last year and just seeing their weekly/fortnightly email in my Inbox makes me smile. Founding Editor Becky Tuch leads a team that reviews magazines and journals from the perspective of a writer looking to submit. Nothing can substitute reading a few copies of a publication to get a feel for style and fit, but The Review Review website database and summary emails are comprehensive, current and really good fun.

Sarah Selecky: I’ve been using her daily writing prompts for a long time now. She’s based in Toronto so if you’re an early-to-bed-early-to-rise writer her email will be waiting for you in the morning. It’s 6am now, I’m at my desk with a peppermint tea and the email prompt for today is –

Write a scene that starts with the line, “Next.”

Hope you have a good writing day. Jen


Superstitions, coffee and tea

I started drinking coffee because I loved the smell and the sound of the drip percolator. During my university years coffee became an integral part of my morning – along with a few other exam preparation superstitions that included buying the Wise Owl lecture pads and switching from B&H 25s to Kent cigarettes in 20s soft packs – and decades later I still savour a good long black every morning.

While living in London I offended many “baristas” because I believe life’s too short to drink bad coffee. I also developed a preference for Pukkah notepads and imported Artline200 Fine 0.4 pens from Australia (via family visitors) because I couldn’t find a 0.4 felt nib anywhere.

Many writers have routines, superstitions and strong allegiances to stationery items.

Several months ago I added a new beverage to my morning writing routine when I found the Gewurzhaus range of teas and spices. I’m not going to reveal the details but will say that I love the name of this particular tea as much as the taste, and I’m looking forward to sharing it (alongside a signature blend coffee and healthy food) with my WriteSpace guests.

You deserve time to write, and enjoy good tea and coffee.

Writing Maps: Creative Writing Prompts

It’s great to already have bookings for the first WriteSpace retreat on Sunday 21st June. Welcome Melbourne writers!

For those of you who might need a little inspiration to keep writing all day, I’ve just ordered the full set of 15 maps from Writing Maps so there’ll be all sorts of prompts to help you along the way.

When I get stuck I like using prompts to write lists – things that start with the letter ‘p’ was one I really enjoyed recently and wrote about on my blog.


WriteSpace retreat – It’s your time to write

Melbourne writers – welcome to WriteSpace

Launching Melbourne’s newest writing retreat – WriteSpace is an easy-to-get-to metropolitan escape. It’s a whole day for you to dedicate to your writing project in the company of other writers.

Here’s what WriteSpace is all about and why you, or the writer in your life, deserves it.

The first retreat is on Sunday 21st June at CAE, 253 Flinders Lane.

You’re welcome to arrive anytime from 9.30am and we’ll be open for you to keep working until 5pm.

Please get in touch to ask any questions or make a booking. Jen Squire

You deserve time to write