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Guest Blogs

A blog by EKTobin

Ink Stains is our blog dedicated to younger writers. Here we post competitions, information on events and tips. The best advice? Keep reading – everything you can lay your hands on, and keep writing. Write for yourself to find your voice. If you’d like to contribute to this blog drop vanessa@writing.ie an email.

Emma Tobin is 19 and from Newbridge, Co Kildare, Ireland where she lives with her parents, one brother, four cats, and some fish. Emma is in her first year at UCD where she is studying English, Philosophy and History. Emma writes prose, poetry and fiction. Emma has completed two novels and is working on her third which is a YA contemporary novel with the title 'Paperweight Soldiers'. Emma blogs at abcofbeingateenager.blogspot.ie and is a regular contributor to the arts show Artyfacts on KFM Radio in Kildare. Emma has had a number of columns published in The Irish Times. In May 2013 her article 'Blinking Out' was included in a new HeadSpace magazine for young people focusing on positive mental health. Emma's poetry has won a number of national awards including the Trocaire/Poetry Ireland annual poetry competition in the senior post primary category in both 2014 and 2015. Emma was the recipient of the Conor Bowman Youth Award at the Hopkins Poetry Summer School in 2014. Emma was the joint poetry winner for June 2015 of the Hennessy New Irish Writing and had two of her poems published as part of that in The Irish Times. As a result she is not on the shortlist for the Hennessy Writer of the Year award in the emerging poetry category. You can find her on Facebook as Emma Tobin Writer and on Twitter as @EK_Tobin.

You can follow online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

When You Can’t Read: Listen. Amazon Launches Whispersync in the UK

Posted by EKTobin on 20 August 2014.

When you can’t read, now you can listen to your Kindle, switching between reading and listening to your Kindle books in the Kindle App at the tap of a button. Amazon say, “Just pop in your headphones, tap the button, and keep the story going…in the car, in the gym, in the kitchen, wherever your day takes you. Whenever your eyes are occupied but your mind is free, your story is ready for listening” Whispersync...

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Scribble Publishing’s Young Writers WW1 Short Story Competition

Posted by EKTobin on 12 August 2014.

Scribble Publishing is a new company founded with the aim of kick-starting and supporting the careers of talented, new writers. As such, we are dedicated to providing opportunities to new writers and young people, and are launching our first short story competition. As this year marks 100 years since the beginning of the First World War, we are looking for submissions of short stories on the topic of WW1 from young writers to be published...

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Viking Competition Winners

Posted by EKTobin on 12 August 2014.

Every week we giveaway books to readers who enter our draw, but we had a huge response to our recent Viking giveaway! Viking is one of the leading suppliers of office equipment across Ireland. The company has gone from strength to strength since it was established in 1960, with the brand’s presence now felt in 11 countries across the globe. It is the wide selection of office supplies on offer that helps the company stand...

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AsIam.ie looking for writers – can you help?

Posted by EKTobin on 4 August 2014.

AsIam.ie is the new Autism services website (Austism Spectrum Information, advice and meeting point)  founded by Adam Harris (who you might have seen on the Late Late Show) – a charity just getting off the ground, Adam is looking for two journalist interns for the site to work remotely but meet with him weekly or bi-weekly in a central Dublin location to discuss weekly content: They need: 1) Features Writer – This writer will have...

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So what is YA anyway?

Posted by EKTobin on 1 August 2014.

In a really good article in The Guardian post the first ever Young Adult Literature Conference (YALC), Imogen Russell looks at what age group YA is aimed at, and how New Adult fits into the picture. The Young Adult Literature Convention took place 12-13 July, bringing together the UK’s YA publishers to provide a host of author events including talks, workshops, signings, as well as a bookshop provided by Waterstones and publisher stands promoting new and...

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Awesome Book Sculpture: Derailing My Train of Thought

Posted by EKTobin on 29 July 2014.

Derailing My Train of Thought is a creative book sculpture project designed to convey the effects of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) on a person’s life using the example of a derailing train. Designed by awesome artist Thomas Wightman who has designed several book sculptures – check his website to see Drowning from Obsession.        

13-19? This Competition is For You Too

Posted by EKTobin on 23 July 2014.

The Alice Munro Short Story Competition The Alice Munro Festival provides a forum for writers to develop their craft and connect with like-minded literati. The short story competition celebrates one of Canada’s greatest short story writers. Entries must be typed using standard fonts such as Times Roman, Helvetica or Arial, size 11 or 12, double spaced on plain white paper.Story pages must contain a page number and either the title of your story or one...

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Chickenhouse Children’s Book Competition Open

Posted by EKTobin on 17 July 2014.

While childrens publisher Chickenhouse no longer accept unsolicited manuscripts, they do offer unpublished writers of fiction (for children aged 7-18) the chance to submit their work to the annual Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition. The 2015 competition is now open for entries!  They say “Please note, as we have recently suspended our picture book list we no longer accept submissions of picture book texts/illustrations. This year we have extended the opportunity to enter to those...

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Writing Prompt-ly with Yvonne Cassidy

Posted by EKTobin on 10 July 2014.

Recently, I wrote here about writing prompts, and how, in a writing class in Dun Laoghaire, the teacher’s writing prompt became the kernel of an idea that became my first novel, The Other Boy. This week, I’m going to share some writing prompts that have worked for me and my students. But before we jump into the list below, let’s go over some of the ground rules. I think of a writing prompt as being...

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National Library Summer Programme for Kids

Posted by EKTobin on 4 July 2014.

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) based in Dublin’s Kildare Street is running a great programme of FREE events for kids this summer for children aged from five upwards, focusing on family history, storytelling and art. Highlights will include: On Thursday, 3rd July from 11.30am to 1pm, children aged seven to 12 can learn about the ancient art of heraldry, look at the ways coats of arms are used today and design their own imaginary...

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