Archive for October, 2011

Writing opportunity for teens

Cuckoo Quarterly is a new online literary magazine written and edited by young people aged between 11-19. It aims publish the best new writing by young people and to be accessible and attractive to a wide readership. Cuckoo is based in the Newcastle upon Tyne but wants to hear from young writers all over the world. You can read Edition 1 now:

Submit: There are four editions of Cuckoo a year and they say they are always looking for new writing. Cuckoo accepts most forms, including poetry, short stories and non-fiction writing. They’re keen to publish audio recordings/ podcasts etc. and to hear from young photographers and illustrators. The deadline for submissions to Edition 2 will be 21st December 2011. Email your writing and a two-sentence biography to editors @

Science Fiction on stage

When theatre was our main form of visual dramatic storytelling, all genre could be found on stage. But since the advent of film and television, there has been a separation of what story types are considered ‘appropriate’ to be shown in each media. Science Fiction, for instance, is often thought to be ‘better’ on film – mainly due to the ability to create futuristic special effects – but in so doing the power of the imagination to conjure up futuristic scenarios has been undermined. This prejudice is being increasingly challenged by playwrights and directors, evidence of which was seen with the plethora of SF plays at this year’s New York City Fringe Festival. In the UK, too, companies such as the re-formed Science Fiction Theatre of Liverpool are crossing ‘the final frontier’ and SF was also seen at this year’s 247 Festival in Manchester. The Crafty Writer decided to ask Richard Stockwell, playwright of one of 247’s SF offerings Future Shock, to give his perspective on putting this controversial genre on stage. Continue reading ‘Science Fiction on stage’

New author website for Fiona

I’ve just started a new author website to focus on me and my career. How vain does that sound? Oh well, what must be, must be. The Crafty Writer will continue as it is as a writing advice site and blog – along with its associated free writing courses and editorial services. But all the self-promoting bumf about me, your dear host, will now appear on Do drop by from time to time or I will feel completely abandoned!

New novel on Kindle: The Peace Garden

fiona-veitch-smith-the-peace-gardenWell I’ve finally bitten the bullet and released a novel on Kindle. The actual process of getting it up on the site was relatively simple, but it took a few goes as I needed to ensure that the source Word doc was as visually close to publishing as it could be with all of the correct style ‘tags’ in place. Yes the Kindle software formats your document into e-book form but it takes its cues from your original document and it is only when you review the Kindle version and see odd lines in odd places that you realise something has gone wrong in the source document. So if you’re going to follow my footsteps and get your book onto Kindle, take the time to get it right. And if you’re looking for a new book this autumn, why not download The Peace Garden now?

“When Natalie Porter starts investigating plant theft in a suburban cul-de-sac, she never dreams it will lead her on a terrifying journey from the gardens of England to the townships of Apartheid South Africa; and a far darker secret than the whereabouts of a missing azalea. A romantic thriller doused in political intrigue, racial tension, international terrorism and … gardening. If you like your romances gentle and your thrillers intelligent, then you won’t be able to put down The Peace Garden until the last breathtaking page.”