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Books Are For Everyone | Save Our Libraries

Now is the time for all good people to come to the aid of the party or put another way, “Do it!”

Melissa Holden, Writer

Here in the UK, there has been a lot of talk of libraries closing all over the country. The party line is because they aren’t used much anymore, but I call bullshit on that one.

When I was little, my favourite part of the week was Saturday morning. Every Saturday, my mother would walk me down to the town library and let me pick as many books as I could carry. I was not unlike to Roald Dahl’s Matilda. I couldn’t get enough of what those wonderful words had to teach me.


As a writer, I am clearly biased when it comes to books. I have spent my life in awe of, crying at, laughing with, and sometimes even screaming at the pages of, books. Books are not just pieces of paper covered in the ink symbols we call the written word, but they are the door to limitless possibilities. 

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Fictive Dream Call for Submissions

A great way to gain a wider audience


Fictive Dream is open to submissions and, as always, we’re interested in short stories with a contemporary feel (500 – 2,500 words). We especially like stories that give an insight into the human condition; stories that focus on those moments that change people’s lives. They may be on any subject. They may be challenging, dramatic, playful, exhilarating or cryptic. Above all, they must be well-crafted and compelling.

Check out the Fictive Dream website here.

Look at our submission guidelines here.

We’re looking forward to receiving your best work!

Laura Black

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January Round-Up

Good old Short stops, keeping us up to date with news and opportunities


Happy New Year – may it be filled with short stories and writing successes!

Lit Mags

Here Comes Everyone is calling for submissions for their ‘Classified’ issue, deadline 1 Feb. The Shadow Booth is open to submissions of weird and eerie fiction from womenwriters only in January. Tales from the Forest is calling for submissions for its tenth issue, which is unthemed, deadline Feb 17.

Live Lit

Story Friday is open to submissions for its next live event, in Bath, on the theme of ‘2018’, deadline 14 Jan.

Mentoring & Courses

Word Factory is looking for four emerging short story writers to take part in its Apprentice Awardprogramme, deadline Feb 7. Haringey Live Lit is running a 6-week novella-writing course in London, beginning Jan 30.


Spotlight Books is calling for short fiction manuscripts from English writers from underrepresented backgrounds, deadline 24 Feb.



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Be vigilant, scammers are on the prowl

We are all susceptible, take care and don’t drop your guard

Jean's Writing

And with this new year comes more vermin searching for an opening, no matter how small.

I’m referring to scammers, hackers and trolls.

The more gadgets we have, the more avenues and opportunities for a criminal to find you. Don’t fall for these frauds. From our email, smartphones, yes iPhones too, computers, tablets, blogs, websites, Amazon Echo, Google Home, or even smart TVs, we are all susceptible to these damn crooks. AND, of course, we are vulnerable on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and any of the many social media sites. Scammers are trolling for any insecurity or vulnerability in your life, online and real.

Once upon a time, long long ago, Apple products were immune. Or so we thought. But that is not the case, not now. So don’t let your guard down just because you have an Apple product. Scammers are everywhere phishing for your information.

No need to…

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BeaconLit’s 500-word comp is open for January

Flash fictiooneers, a cheap, easy to enter competition with worthwhile prizes, why not give it a go.


Hello everyone. Yes, the December’s themes of ‘an alternative Christmas’ or ‘not feeling festive’ has closed and January’s competition is now open. The theme is ‘a fresh start’ to be used in any way you would like. Rules, prizes, entry form etc. via

NB. If you have stories ready for future themes, please don’t submit them until the relevant month as the entry will be disqualified with no refund given, and you won’t be able to submit it in the correct month (because we will have seen it). It’s rule number four. 🙂

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MLMM’s #Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille, January 3rd 2019, Happy New Year


Raindrops and fireflies

pierce the darkness while thunder

roars in close refrain

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Dip Into Something New

Kick start the New year with a new read and what better way than with this box of goodies, I’ll certainly be investigating between the pages.


Slip away for a few hours, into other worlds – away from all the troubles of this one.

Perhaps into the future – a near future – dark and disturbing and yet – so close. There follow the fates of four people worn down and broken – or angry with the system. Who break out of it and try to break it. Who question why they did and falter in their resolve only to be thrown back into the fray to discover the truth within themselves. A tale that questions rebellion and its motivations while railing at the oppression around us. Try it.

Mankind Limited

Or if not the future – the other worlds – supernatural ones – that impinge onto ours from – where? Some other dimension? The afterlife? Our own minds?

Where ever they come from – try these Thirteen Tales of the Ghostly variety.

Thirteen Tales of Ghosts

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The final journey

Lately departed,

borne on ebony shoulders

solemn eyes, brows creased,

handfuls of damp, scattered earth

start to dance upon the wood

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orangutanThe tropical sun

beams down on the arid earth,

palm trees stand in lines,

joyful songs of the forest

become the drumbeat of tears.


(photo from pixabay)


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Call for submissions: SPOTLIGHT BOOKS

An obviously great opportunity


Small books, big ideas– we’re looking for a few good writers.

Inventive.  Hidden.  Compelling.  Unrecognised.  Challenging.  Unheard. Beautiful.  Ambitious.

Creative Future, Myriad Editions and New Writing South seek the best unpublished English short fiction writers from under-represented backgrounds—those who face barriers due to mental health, disability, identity or social circumstance.

We’re looking for manuscripts of 8-10,000 words–no more, no less.  We’re happy with one long story or a selection of several.  

Six writers (three fiction writers and three poets) will be selected, supported to polish their manuscripts and further their careers, and be published in individual short books with international distribution.

For more info and how to enter, please click here 

Deadline: 24 February 2019

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