Welcome!

I've set up this blog so that all my friends, relations and colleagues in the world of writing can keep up to speed with what I'm doing - from now on, I'll never have to say sorry for not keeping in touch.

Or anyway, that's the plan.

So do please link up with me on Facebook and Twitter - https://www.facebook.com/margaret.james.5268 and https://twitter.com/majanovelist.

I hope everyone who reads my posts will find something of interest in them - news from the publishing world, competition guides, author gossip, and updates on my own career.

Please keep reading!

You can find my novels as digital downloads on Apple iTunes, Kobo, Kindle and Nook, and most are available as print paperbacks, too.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

June Book of the Month

If you love a delicious romantic read with a sharp twist of real-life lemon, All That Mullarkey is the novel for you. Set in the present day, in which real women spend a lot of their time juggling their lives, this story doesn't make light of the problems and difficulties that many of us face. Bad marriage, no marriage, commitment phobia, control freakery - they're all here in a great story that races along, and offers the most satisying but certainly not saccharine of endings.

You can find out more about Sue if you visit her blog at suemoorcroft.wordpress.com/, and you can also find out how a really pro-active author goes about promoting her work - attagirl, Sue! You're an inspiration to us all!

Love in Milton Keynes

If you write romantic fiction, and you live in or know anything about Milton Keynes, this competition might interest you! See link at www.amazing-mk.co.uk/home/romance and get romancing!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Happy Day

Paperback deal for novel The Silver Locket confirmed - it's in the trade press, so it must be true!

See www.booktrade.info/i.php/27468

The novel is on Amazon's UK site for pre-order now, at tinyurl.com/376s7l8

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Happy Endings?

If you're as yet unpublished and want to know the horrid truth about what really goes on in the publishing industry, it would be worth having a read of Trisha Ashley's wickedly funny novel Happy Endings.

In this deliciously entertaining book, romantic novelist and freelance editor Tina Devino tries to point her wannabe clients in the right direction, while also attempting to salvage her own sinking ship of a career.

Trisha is a bestselling novelist herself, and she knows what she's talking about. So read (or listen to - there's an audio version, too) Happy Endings, laugh, wince and be inspired!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Agent Auction

Please help an agent anxious to find the next J K Rowling or
Robert Harris (in screenwriting mode.

See www.societyofauthors.org/noticeboard/blake-friedmann-manuscript-auction-book-trade-charity for more details.

You don't have to be a member of Society of Authors to enter.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Money going begging...

Do all you published authors out there know about Public Lending Right? Of course you do. It's a little present from the government which we authors whose books are in public libraries recive every February, and very welcome it is, too. But if by any chance you're not registered, do it now via www.plr.uk.com. It's been estimated that PLR take-up in the UK is well under 100%. Even if you have only one book in the system, it's still worth registering.

As of this year, UK authors are entitled to receive Irish PLR via www.plr.ie/. But don't get too excited. My Irish PLR this year bought me a new M&S teeshirt, not a Prada handbag!

Published authors can also claim revenue from ALCS, the Authors' Licensing and Collecting Society, to which Society of Authors members have free membership. The links you need are www.alcs.co.uk and www.societyofauthors.org.

I save up half of my payments in a special account. They pay for Christmas! Well, that's the theory. But, like most piggy banks, the account sometimes gets raided...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Short story competition - but you'll have to be quick...

On Saturday 15 May the Guardian newspaper announced a short story competition (theme or subject matter - summer) with a closing date of Friday 18 June. So thanks for the short notice, guys...

If you're keen to enter, see www.guardian.co.uk/shortstories and start thinking about summer, which might be difficult as the rain comes down.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New competition - write the first 500 words of a novel, get it read by a literary agent!

Do you have the first 500 words of a new novel handy?

Do you want a literary agent?

If so, see the slush pile mountaineering link in my competitions list on the right.

Unagented writers seeking agency representation are invited to enter this competition run by literary agent Kate Nash. You'll need to send in the first 500 words of your novel.

Entry is free.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Chocolate does it for Trisha!

Woo hoo, Trisha Ashley's latest novel Chocolate Wishes has now sold more than 40,000 in paperback and is on re-order everywhere!

Congratulations, Trisha - but please write faster. I've read all your novels - twice. Or even thrice.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ooh, the excitement...

No, not the forthcoming General Election - that's a terrifying prospect, not an exciting one. I'll be voting, of course - we can't have women throwing themselves under horses and not appreciating what they achieved for us. If it hadn't been for Emily and her mates, we women would still be barefoot and voteless, chained to the kitchen sink.

I mean the Romantic Novelists' Association's Summer Party, on Thursday 13 May. This is one of the pinkest evenings of the literary year, and sees the presentation of the New Writers' Scheme Award for a first novel which has been through the RNA's own appraisal service. See, it can happen, first novels do get published, and if you're a romantic novelist the RNA can make your day! See www.rna-uk.org for more details and lots of glamorous (ahem) photographs, coming up next week.