About maggiecammiss

After many years working in television news in London, I now live in the beautiful South Norfolk countryside with my husband, Nick. I have completed one novel, No News is Good News, which was published by Accent Press in December 2014 and I'm now working on the second novel in the series. I belong to a local writing group, Cutting Edge Writers, who meet weekly at The Cut in Halesworth, Suffolk, and we have recently published our first anthology of short stories and poetry. I also write short stories, some of which I read on local radio.

The same…. but different. Finding the perfect word.

How often have you paused, pen in hand, fingers over keyboard, trying to think of an alternative word to avoid a repetition?  How often have you looked over a piece of work and realised that you’ve used the same word several times in one paragraph? Or worse, had it pointed out to you at your writing group?

It’s time to grow your vocabulary.

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Asking Myself Some Serious Questions

desert island

While on my desert island recently, I was thinking that it might be fun to bring a writerly perspective to some of the more random, even philosophical questions I’ve been asked over the years. Some are pretty run of the mill; some have personal resonance and most have nothing, specifically, to do with writing. But I think they’re interesting enough to run a series of author interviews in the future. See what you think. Continue reading

Are e-books stupid? Should e-books be classed as ‘real books’? Director of @BloodHoundBook @BetsyReavley is in the hot seat with #TWG

Some sensible comments from Betsy Reavley of Bloodhound Books continue this long running debate

The Writing Garnet

E-book or not to e-book?
Last month, the head of one of the world’s biggest publishers, spoke to the media about e-books. Whilst I would usually celebrate anything from the book world making the media, I remember being quite flabbergasted by what I had read in said article. I am sure a lot of people read the article in question – it had quite a lot of shares on social media at the time! The comment which left a lot of people, including myself, reeling, was the quote ‘e-books are stupid’. Pardon? I am fully aware that people prefer one format over another, after all, we cannot all like the same things. Some readers may prefer to read hardbacks or paperbacks instead of reading e-books, or visa versa. Personally, I don’t see the problem with that, I am just thankful that we actually have a choice. Think about it – many years ago, the only…

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MEET A LITERARY AGENT AT THE LONDON BOOK FAIR 2018! #AgentOne2One @LondonBookFair @midaspr #Writers #Authors

If you’ve got that novel ready, and even if you haven’t, this is a great opportunity.

Love Books Group

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MEET A LITERARY AGENT AT THE LONDON BOOK FAIR!

Bookings now open for LBF’s Agent One-to-One programme

News for release, 2 March 2018:    The London Book Fair (LBF), the UK’s biggest gathering of international publishers and agents, has announced bookings are now open for its Agent One-to-One programme, which will take place in LBF’s Author HQ – the area of the Fair dedicated to writers and aspiring writers.

The Agent One-to-One programme offers Author HQ attendees the opportunity to meet with a leading literary agent, who will be on hand to offer advice on the publishing process and provide feedback on authors’ pitches and ideas.

Participating agents this year include representatives from AM Heath, Darley Anderson, David Higham Associates, DKW Literary Agency, MBA, Peters Fraser & Dunlop, Sheil Land Associates and Susanna Lea Associates.  Between them, the agents’ areas of interest cover everything from children’s publishing, middle…

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For the Love of Books

As a fledgling writer I was advised that my reading pleasure would be ruined for ever; that I would minutely study everything I read, dissecting the dialogue, the use of language and vocabulary, the narrative style, to determine how it worked. I would treat every novel as a lesson. And I did, up to a point. For a newbie, it was a great way to learn. But I’m getting over that now. I still read a lot of fiction but I’m not obsessed with dismembering every book so I can scrutinise its inner workings in forensic detail. And I still learn a lot from my reading, that’s one of its pleasures. Facts I was previously unaware of, a novel approach to an everyday plot, the crafting of a story arc, I absorb it all. Some books are instantly forgettable; others stay in my head for a long time. Some take up permanent residence, and it’s these that I’d like to share with you. Continue reading

Subplots – adding texture to your novel

The other day I sat through a film featuring a subplot that had nothing whatever to do with the main thrust of the film. It didn’t reveal anything about the characters or the storyline, it didn’t hint at motivation, it wasn’t even a credible red herring. Completely irrelevant. I can’t even remember the title. However, it had an unexpected, but very useful consequence.

After the successful conclusion of an important subplot of my own, in which my mother in law was transferred to residential care when her dementia became too advanced to manage at home, I found myself with an unaccustomed amount of free writing time and not a word in my head. Tum-te-tumming at the keyboard I recalled the film with the inconsequential subplot and looked at it through the lens of my own perspective. What purpose should subplots serve in novels? Continue reading