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Guest Blogs

A blog by Derek Flynn

Derek Flynn runs Writing.ie's SongBook blog, and is an Irish writer and musician. He has a Masters in Creative Writing from Trinity College, Dublin. He’s been published in a number of publications, including The Irish Times, and his fiction was featured in 'Surge', an anthology of new Irish writing published by O’ Brien Press with the aim of showcasing “the very best of the next generation of Irish authors”. Online he can be found at his writing/music blog – ‘Rant, with Occasional Music’ – and on Twitter as @derekf03

You can follow Derek online, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Collaborative book launches – the future of book marketing?

Posted by Derek Flynn on 13 June 2015.

On 3rd June this year, CompletelyNovel.com held its second One Big Book Launch in London – an initiative harnessing the power of collaboration to launch ten new books from ten emerging authors at the same event. And yes – it was the best night of the year once again. Here’s why it worked, and what you can take forward into your own marketing. The Idea Last year, the CompletelyNovel team were chatting to authors about...

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When Writer’s Attack … The Sequel!

Posted by Derek Flynn on 28 May 2015.

If you haven’t read it, you can check out the original “When Writer’s Attack …” post here and then strap yourself in for some more pithy author put-downs. What’s interesting about author put-downs is that many are not afraid to go for the big hitters. Cervantes’ Don Quixote is regarded as a classic. Unless you’re Martin Amis: “Reading Don Quixote can be compared to an indefinite visit from your most impossible senior relative, with all...

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Stephen King’s “Everything You Need to Know About Writing Successfully – in Ten Minutes”

Posted by Derek Flynn on 11 May 2015.

If you’re a writer looking for writing advice, you can’t have failed to notice that the bookshelves in your local bookshop/library are heaving under the weight of “How To Write Fiction” books. However, I’m going to stick my neck out and say that there is probably only one “Guide to Writing Fiction” book that you will ever need: Stephen King’s “On Writing”. My copy sits – dog-eared – on my bookshelf and it’s probably been...

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Music & Me: Chris Binchy

Posted by Derek Flynn on 22 April 2015.

“Music & Me” is a new feature in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. This week’s victim guest is Chris Binchy, author of four novels, the most recent of which is “Five Days Apart”. What are your earliest musical memories? We lived in Canada when I was young, so my first memories are of the music my parents were listening to there. ‘Clouds’ and ‘Blue’ by Joni...

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Music & Me: John Connolly

Posted by Derek Flynn on 12 March 2015.

“Music & Me” is a new feature in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. This week’s victim author is John Connolly, bestselling author of the Charlie Parker mysteries and the Samuel Johnson novels for middle-grade readers. The latest Charlie Parker novel “The Wolf in Winter” is on sale now. What are your earliest musical memories? God, probably listening to a 33 1/3 single of nursery rhymes on my...

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Music & Me: Jennie Ridyard

Posted by Derek Flynn on 5 March 2015.

“Music & Me” is a new feature in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. This week’s victim author is Jennie Ridyard, co-author with John Connolly of the YA series “The Chronicles of the Invaders”, the second volume of which – “Empire” – is on sale now. What are your earliest musical memories? My mum borrowed a record from the public library – we old skool folk...

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Music & Me: Arlene Hunt

Posted by Derek Flynn on 26 February 2015.

“Music & Me” is a new feature in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. This week’s victim author is crime writer, Arlene Hunt. Arlene is the author of eight novels, including her latest, The Outsider, which was described as “Masterful” by the Sunday Times. What are your earliest musical memories? I listened to all kinds of weird Irish folk music when I was a kid, (‘Lemon...

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Music & Me: Liz Nugent

Posted by Derek Flynn on 19 February 2015.

Today is the beginning of a new feature on Songbook – “Music & Me”, in which authors talk about their musical influences, their favourite musicians and their “musical guilty pleasures”. First up is Liz Nugent. Liz is the author of the critically-acclaimed novel Unravelling Oliver, winner of the “Ireland AM Crime Fiction Award” at the Irish Book Awards. What are your earliest musical memories? My Dad’s collection included a lot of Johnny Cash and Frank...

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Stellar Line-up Confirmed for Ennis Book Club Festival

Posted by Derek Flynn on 13 February 2015.

Man Booker Prize nominee Niall Williams, former politician Des O’Malley, Eason Novel of the Year winner Mary Costello, crime novelists Val McDermid and Paul Carson and multi award-winning short story writer Colin Barrett will join a host of internationally renowned figures at the Ennis Book Club Festival 2015 in County Clare from March 6th-8th. The 2015 Festival Programme was launched today (Tuesday, 20 January 2015) and features author visits, readings, lectures and workshops in various...

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Brutally Honest Writing Advice from Brutally Honest Writers

Posted by Derek Flynn on 5 February 2015.

Getting Started If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favour you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy. – Dorothy Parker Following the Rules There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. – W. Somerset Maugham First Drafts The first draft...

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