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Gollanczfesf - publishing industry day

As promised, this week I'm talking about the Gollanczfest publishing industry day.  The first session, on Writing, Publishing and Getting an Agent, had writers saying that we agonise too much over our 'killer first lines'. But we were urged to get our big idea up front - in the first page if possible.  Joanne Harris admitted that "I wrote badly for a very long time."  She also said that "once you've found your voice nobody else will creep into your voice". Alastair Reynolds cautioned us not to get emotionally attached to our work after we've submitted it.
The 'Perfecting Your Book Pitch' session asked us to consider 'What will excite people about my book?'  But we were cautioned never to let that question constraine our writing.  When pitching, meaningful comparisons of your book are helpful, but Marcus Gipps (Commissioning Editor, Gollancz) reminded us that "a good pitch won't make me buy a book I don't love."  …

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