Australian Writers’ Centre- Writing About Food & Country Style Short Story Competition & Writing Coursesd

Having trouble viewing this? View in your browser.

Home Sydney Melbourne Online Courses Contact Us
Australian Writers' Centre
7 March 2013
Sydney: (02) 9929 0088

 

  • Writing About Food
  • TIP: To capitalise or not?
  • Country Style Short Story Competition
  • What is Chekov’s Gun?
  • Did you know? Buffalo buffalo…
  • Plan ahead – Creative Writing
    Stage 1
  • WEBPICK: Miss Snark’s First Victim
Valerie Khoo

Food. I love it. Pretty simple really. Not only do I love eating food, I love reading about it. There’s more to amazing food writing than a list of recipes. Inspiring food writers take their readers on a journey. They don’t just cite ingredients like they are reeling off a grocery list, they turn their stories into a sensory experience their readers will savour long after they’ve finished reading.

That’s why I love our weekend course Writing About Food. Not only will you learn how to write in a way that sets you apart from other foodies out there, you also get to eat! You’ll discover:

  • How to communicate the ‘flavour wheel’ to audiences with varying tastes.
  • Structuring your articles so they don’t collapse like a bad soufflé.
  • How to write riveting food reviews (without a single cravat in sight…).
  • The ingredients and method to writing great recipes.
  • Securing fresh, juicy quotes in interviews.
  • How to combine your love of food with a taste
    for travel.
  • How and where to get your work published.
  • Bringing your food writing career to the boil – either as a full-time gig or profitable hobby.
  • and so MUCH more!

 

TIP: To capitalise or not?

The federal election is looming and we’re all being inundated with articles and opinion pieces on everything from Julia Gillard’s glasses to Joe Hockey’s tutu (with some policy discussion thrown in with good measure). So we thought it was time to refresh your memory on what terms you should and shouldn’t capitalise when you’re referring to the government.

Government
Only capitalise this if it’s part of a formal title, otherwise lower case is fine. For example:

The policy will be reviewed by the AustralianGovernment from time to time.
The government proposes to review the policy.

Federal
The adjective federal requires a capital only if itforms part of an official title. For example:

The Federal Court of Australia.
federal government initiative.

The Prime Minister
References to the current Australian prime minister are always capitalised. References to former Australian prime ministers are not. For example:

The Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, is currently touring western Sydney.
Edmund Barton is a former prime minister of Australia.


Country Style Short
Story Competition

The annual Country Style Short Story Competition is proving very popular. And it’s no wonder – with $5000 cash up for grabs and a chance to see your story in print, why wouldn’t you enter?

This year’s competition is for short stories up to 1500 words long on the theme ‘chance’. You can refer to that theme as directly or obliquely as you like, but make sure it’s there in your story. Entries will be judged by Country Style editor Victoria Carey, author and poet Cate Kennedy and a representative from Allen & Unwin.

The competition closes on Friday 26 April 2013. For more details check out the conditions of entry here or visit the Country Style Facebook page.


TIP: What is Chekov’s Gun?

What is Chekov’s Gun and how can you apply it to your story? Well, I don’t think I need to explain who Chekov is. The Russian literary legend was famous for his short stories, novellas and plays. But what does his gun have to do with your writing? It’s not so much the gun you need to worry about as what it demonstrates.

Chekov once said, “If you say in the first chapter that there is a rifle hanging on the wall, in the second or third chapter it absolutely must go off. If it’s not going to be fired, it shouldn’t be hanging there.” In other words, don’t draw your readers’ attention to an object if that object is not going to have significance later in the story.

What Chekov is really warning against is unnecessary clutter in your writing. If you think about Chekov’s Gun when writing fiction, you’ll be more aware of what you should and shouldn’t include.

ONLINE COURSE:
Magazine and Newspaper Writing

This course will give you the tools and skills to write magazine and newspaper articles that editors want to publish. You’ll learn important skills like the questions you should ask in an interview. We’ve distilled what would otherwise take you years to figure out on your own. After this course, you’ll be able to write with confidence and get published faster.

Five week online course starting the week beginning Monday 11 March 2013
Time:
 Whenever it suits you
Cost: $395


Writing About Interiors, Style
and Design

Are you fascinated by home renovation and interior design? If so, you’re lucky. There are plenty of shows on TV to inspire us – Grand Designs, The Block – and countless magazines devoting their pages to great design and architecture. If you have a passion for interiors and design why not write about it? This two-week industry insight course will show you how to write, and publish, design-related articles.

Two week course starting Monday 18 March 2013
Time:
 6.30 pm – 8.30 pm
Cost: $175


Writing for
the Web

Writing copy for your website takes a different set of skills to writing for print. You need to be able to grab a visitor’s attention and hold it, and the key to that is clear, concise and engaging writing. This one-day seminar will show you exactly how to achieve this. You’ll learn the golden rules of information design, how to write for scannability and how to incorporate search engine optimisation in your web copy.

One-day seminar on Thursday 21 March 2013
Time: 9 am – 4 pm
Cost: $450


Did you know? Buffalo buffalo…

Consider this sentence:

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

No doubt you’re thinking, “that’s not a sentence!” but you’re wrong. This is in fact a grammatically correct sentence using the required parts of speech with the various meanings of the word ‘buffalo’.

The sentence was first used by William J Rapaport in 1972, when he was a graduate student at Indiana University. He used the sentence to show how homonyms (words with the same spelling but different meanings) and homophones (words that sound the same but differ in meaning) can be used to create “complicated linguistic constructs”. In this example he uses three meanings of the word buffalo:

  • the city of Buffalo in New York
  • the noun buffalo, the name of the animal
  • and the verb buffalo, which means to bully, confuse or bewilder

Add a few more words to the sentence and you have something that makes a little more sense:

[Those] buffalo(es) from Buffalo [that are intimidated by] buffalo(es) from Buffalo intimidate buffalo(es) from Buffalo.


Oops word

We spotted this sign near Yarra Junction in Victoria.

It seems this sign writer is hedging their bets by including an apostrophe in the first ‘picnics’ but not the second. Well, that’s not an option. You definitely don’t need an apostrophe to create a plural so only the second version, picnics, is right.

Plan ahead – Creative Writing Stage 1

It’s only March but already we’ve had well over 100 people complete our Creative Writing Stage 1 course. Every one of them has finished the course feeling inspired and ready to tackle their fiction writing projects. If you’ve always wanted to explore your creative side and write fiction, we have more Creative Writing courses coming up that will help you get your story out of your imagination and onto the page.

Creative Writing Stage 1 will teach you all the elements of a good story – voice, plot, character, and structure – and show you how to apply them to your writing. You can join us for a five-week evening course, a weekend intensive course, or if you can’t get to our training rooms in Milsons Point, an online course.

Book nowBook now

Best Australian Blogs Competition

Don’t forget to enter the Best Australian Blogs Competition. There is over $18,000 worth of writing training, books and cash available to win.

The Best Australian Blogs Competition is one of Australia’s leading blog competitions. The 2012 competition saw 1024 blogs entered, and over 17,000 votes cast in the People’s Choice round.


WEBPICK:
Miss Snark’s First Victim

Don’t be put off by the title of this blog. It’s actually an excellent resource for writers and really not as scary as it sounds. Miss Snark (who blogs here anonymously) is a YA and kids science fiction and fantasy writer. The best thing about this blog is the ‘Crits and Contests’. The ‘crits’ are in-house critiquing sessions, a chance for authors to submit the first page of their work for feedback from Miss Snark herself and other visitors to the blog. (The focus is on YA manuscripts.)

The ‘contests’ are something else entirely. Once a month between June and December, Miss Snark runs the Secret Agent Contests. For this contest you can submit your writing, which will compete for a place among 50 entries to be posted on the blog. Those 50 entries will be critiqued on the blog and a secret agent whose identity will be revealed at the end of the contest. Plenty of authors have won an agent through this contest, including Aussie YA author, Steph Bowe.

Check it out here.


“We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”

Words of wisdom from – Ernest Hemingway

Upcoming courses

Online Course: Magazine and Newspaper Writing Stage 1 with Sue White/Allison Tait
When: Week beginning Monday 11 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

Online Course: Creative Writing Stage 1 with Cathie Tasker/Pamela Freeman
When: Week beginning Monday 18 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

Online Course: Writing Books for Children and Young Adults with Judith Ridge/Nicola Robinson
When: Week beginning Monday 18 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

New dateOnline Course: Travel Writing with Sue White
When: Week beginning Monday 18 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

New dateOnline Course: Creative Writing Stage 1 with Cathie Tasker/
Pamela Freeman

When: Week beginning Monday 25 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

New dateOnline Course: Magazine and Newspaper Writing Stage 1 with Sue White/Allison Tait
When: Week beginning Monday 25 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

New dateOnline Course: Creative Writing Stage 2 with Cathie Tasker/
Pamela Freeman

When: Week beginning Monday 1 April 2013 for five weeks
Time: Whenever suits you
Cost: $395

Sydney coursesSeminar: Blogging for Beginners with Jen Bishop – FULL
When: Monday 11 March 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Seminar: How to Get Your Book Published with Geoff Bartlett
When: Wednesday 13 March 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Seminar: Professional Business Writing with Sue White
When: Thursday 14 March 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.00 am – 5.00 pm
Cost: $450

Seminar: Editing Essentials with Deb Doyle
When: Friday 15 March 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.00 am – 5.00 pm
Cost: $450

Weekend course: Writing about Food with Carli Ratcliff
When: Saturday 16 March and Sunday 17 March 2013 (2 consecutive days)
Time: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Writing About Interiors, Style and Design with Nigel Bartlett
When: Monday 18 March and 25 March 2013 (2 evening classes)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $175

Seminar: Business Writing Essentials with Tony Spencer-Smith
When: Wednesday 20 March 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.30 am – 4.30 pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: Writing for the web with Grant Doyle
When: Thursday 21 March 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.00 am – 4.00 pm
Cost: $450

Daytime seminar: Blogging for Beginners with Jen Bishop – FULL
When: Wednesday 22 March 2013 (two-hour daytime seminar)
Time: 10.00 am – 12.00 noon
Cost: $85

Weekend course: Creative Writing Stage 1 with Pamela Freeman
When: Saturday 23 March and Sunday 24 March 2013 (2 consecutive days)
Time: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: Self-publishing – How to do it with Geoff Bartlett
When: Monday 25 March 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Course: Creative Writing Stage 1 with James Roy
When: Every Wednesday starting Wednesday 27 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Creative Writing Stage 2 with Jeni Mawter
When: Every Wednesday starting Wednesday 27 March 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: Grammar and Punctuation Essentials with Deb Doyle
When: Thursday 28 March 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.00 am – 5.00 pm
Cost: $450

Seminar: Build Your Profile Using Twitter with Kerri Sackville
When: Tuesday 2 April 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Course: Life Writing with Patti Miller
When: Every Thursday starting Thursday 4 April 2013 for six weeks
Time: 10.00 am – 12.00 noon
Cost: $450

New dateCourse: Magazine and Newspaper Writing Stage 1 with Holly Nott
When: Every Thursday starting Thursday 4 April 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Weekend Course: Write a Chick-Lit Novel with Lisa Heidke
When: Saturday 6 April and Sunday 7 April 2013 (2 consecutive days)
Time: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: From Blog to Book with Kerri Sackville
When: Monday 8 April 2013 (two-hour morning seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Course: Travel Writing with Sue White
When: Every Monday starting Monday 8 April 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: Blogging for Beginners with Jen Bishop
When: Tuesday 9 April 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Course: Writing Picture Books with Cathie Tasker
When: Every Tuesday starting Tuesday 9 April 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30pm
Cost: $395

Seminar: Successful Freelancing with Gayle Bryant
When: Tuesday 16 April 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Seminar: How to Create and Sell Your eBook with Anna Maguire
When: Thursday 18 April 2013 (two-hour evening seminar)
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $85

Course: Travel Memoir with Claire Scobie
When: Every Tuesday starting Tuesday 23 April 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Magazine and Newspaper Writing Stage 2 with Valerie Khoo
When: Every Wednesday starting Wednesday 1 May 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Screenwriting Stage 1 with Tim Gooding
When: Every Wednesday starting Wednesday 1 May 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Introduction to Novel Writing with Pamela Freeman
When: Every Thursday starting Thursday 9 May 2013 for six weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $495

Course: Plotting and Planning with Kate Forsyth
When: Every Monday starting Monday 13 May 2013 for two weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $175

Seminar: PR and Media Releases that Get Results with Catriona Pollard
When: Thursday 23 May 2013 (one-day seminar)
Time: 9.00 am – 5.00 pm
Cost: $495

Course: Writing Books for Children and Young Adults with Judith Ridge
When: Every Wednesday starting Wednesday 5 June 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Course: Screenwriting Stage 2 with Tim Gooding
When: Every Tuesday starting Tuesday 11 June 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

Weekend course: Life Writing with Patti Miller
When: Saturday 29 June and Sunday 30 June 2013 (2 consecutive days)
Time: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
Cost: $450

Program: Write Your Novel with Pamela Freeman
When: Every Monday starting Monday 1 July 2013 for six months
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $2150

Course: Thriller Writing with L.A. Larkin
When: Every Thursday starting Thursday 18 July 2013 for five weeks
Time: 6.30 – 8.30 pm
Cost: $395

OVERSEAS WRITING TOURS
Writing About Food in Vietnam with Carli Ratcliff
When: Saturday 6 April to Sunday 14 April 2013

Writing in the Senses in Bali with Patti Miller
When: Saturday 10 August to Saturday 17 August 2013

Memoir Writing in Paris with Patti Miller – FULL
When: Thursday 24 October to Saturday 9 November 2013

Thanks for signing up to this newsletter.

Wishing you much writing success,

Valerie KhooAbout Valerie:
Valerie Khoo is a journalist, author of six books and founder of the Australian Writers’ Centre. Valerie writes regularly for smh.com.autheage.com.au,brisbanetimes.com.auwatoday.com.aucanberratimes.com.au andbusinessday.com.au. The Australian Writers’ Centre runs a range of popular writing courses in Sydney, Melbourne and online. She is author of Power Stories: The 8 Stories You MUST Tell to Build an Epic Business (Wiley).

Courses Our Blog Podcast Twitter Facebook Contact

Australian Writers’ Centre
Suite 3, 55 Lavender Street Milsons Point NSW 2061
www.WritersCentre.com.au

Leave a comment

Filed under Call to Authors and Contests, Workshops & Conferences

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s