Author Archives: Sacha Black

The BASH, REBRANDED! #MondayBlogs

I can’t quite believe it, but the bash is nearly three years old. *Weeps with pride*

Each year it continues to grow in size which means what we do needs to grow in size too.

Sure, it’s a big blog social, but that doesn’t mean we don’t take it seriously. What started out as one nosy blogger more desperate to meet the friends she’d made online than stay safe and introverted behind the screen, is slowly turning a beast.

One day, I hope, the BASH will be a huge blogging festival. I can dream, right? Besides, I brainwashed the minions into obedience before they knew what they were signing up to and I have plans to recruit more. SHHH, they’ll never know.

So this year, we decided to overhaul the Bash, logos and all. The lovely George Grey, used by both Geoff and Hugh for their cover designs, has upped the BASH anti and given us a much slicker look.

Ladies and gents, the new bash logo… Continue reading

Writespiration #104 52 Weeks in 52 Words Week 8

writespiration-20172017 brings 52 challenges over 52 weeks.

Your challenge is to write your story using the weekly theme/prompt and write it in just 52 words…. EXACTLY, no more, no less.

Submit your entries in the comments or on a blog post and I post them the following week with the new prompt. You have until Sunday to enter.

Pingbacks aren’t too reliable at the moment so it’s worth dropping a comment to say you have posted – just in case. 

Continue reading

FINAL COUNTDOWN – BLOGGERS BASH COMPETITION

This is your countdown warning… The Bloggers Bash Blog competition is closing soon. If you want to enter to win a HUGE blogging goody bag, then you better get your skates on.

There are just six days left to enter. The Competition closes at midnight on the 1st March.

For the details of the competition and how to enter, you can check out the post here.

50 Shades of Mistakes That Sell Books #MondayBlogs

I warn you now, this post is for the open minded.

There are some books that are bound to cause controversy. 50 Shades of Grey is one of those books, so it makes sense that I don’t know many people who actually admit to liking it. But I don’t get it. There have been at least a hundred million copies sold worldwide, which puts it in the realm of the top ten selling books of all time. And that 100m figure was the from two years ago, with film releases it’s only going to boost book sales.

So somebody has to be buying it and reading it.

Most people I talk to are vehemently against the book.  The trilogy seems to ignite more ferocious battles than all the recent political Brouhahas. Most argue their dislike is because it’s written badly, or the subtly abusive connotations around how the male love interest treats the female protagonist.

If you didn’t know, 50 shades of Grey is actually fan fiction of the Twilight saga written by Stephanie Meyer which also sold in excess of a hundred million copies despite being yet another series of books that received significant critical attention.

But here’s my point, and the driver behind this post, if these bitches can sell nearly 300 million copies despite nearly everyone I know wanting to shove their books in a woodchipper, then there has to be something they’re doing right, and I wanna know what it is.

I don’t care if you’re Shakespeare himself risen from the dead to craft word-gold to hit the NYT best seller list, you don’t sell 300 million copies without giving your audience exactly what they want. And that, my dear sweet cherry pies, is the point of being a writer. I don’t know about you folks, but I sure as shit wouldn’t mind selling 300 million copies of my book.

So here’s me, suggesting to you, we all put our disjointed noses and misplaced egos aside for a moment and deconstruct what in the shizzle they did to make themselves so successful. Continue reading

Writespiration #103 52 Weeks in 52 Days Week 7

writespiration-20172017 brings 52 challenges over 52 weeks.

Your challenge is to write your story using the weekly theme/prompt and write it in just 52 words…. EXACTLY, no more, no less.

Submit your entries in the comments or on a blog post and I post them the following week with the new prompt. You have until Sunday to enter.

Pingbacks aren’t too reliable at the moment so it’s worth dropping a comment to say you have posted – just in case. 

Continue reading

30 WRITING COMPETITIONS with Amazing Prizes

Every few months, I like to collate a bucket load of writing competitions and plonk them in a post for you to peruse and enter at your leisure.

I say it all the time, but writing is a muscle. If you don’t exercise it, you’re guna lose it and that doesn’t mean always writing long novel-like prose.

Short stories are like the caffeine of writing. They give your muse a jump start shot of adrenaline and get your brain working in ways you never imagined. Why not make it your goal to enter a comp a month this year?

I’ve only listed first prize winnings this time to save time and as always PLEASE CHECK THE RULES for any competition you enter. There are always details and nuances that you have to adhere to, I have not included them here.

Here’s a list of 30 competitions with big prizes. Clearly enter the first one immediately :p Continue reading

Writespiration #102 52 Weeks in 52 Words Week 6

writespiration-20172017 brings 52 challenges over 52 weeks.

Your challenge is to write your story using the weekly theme/prompt and write it in just 52 words…. EXACTLY, no more, no less.

Submit your entries in the comments or on a blog post and I post them the following week with the new prompt. You have until Sunday to enter.

Pingbacks aren’t too reliable at the moment so it’s worth dropping a comment to say you have posted – just in case.  Continue reading

4 Ways Not to F*** Up Your Novel’s Tenses

I’m in the home stretch, for both my books, the glorious finish line is in sight… like the marathon runner entering the stadium I am high, the lactic acid burn is intense but like an addict, I love it. Things are going well…and then I realise…I’ve messed up, BIG time. Ballsed up like a big pile of chunky vomit, covered in word poops and a distinct time distorted tense cock up.

Now, I am tense. Tense, because I fudged up my fuckling manuscript. I’m trying not to throw my toys out the pram, because this is supposed to be the last edit, and it is, kinda. It’s just a chuff ton bigger than I thought it was going to be.

Here’s what happened: I gave my manuscript to beta readers they provided some delightful and useful feedback, I processed said feedback and then I put it down whilst I finished off 13 Steps to Evil my non-fiction writing craft book that teaches writers how to craft better villains. Three months elapsed and when I came to do the final edit of Keepers. I started writing, and could not for the life of me understand why I couldn’t get it right.

Something was off, something intangible, a murky jelly-like substance that was just out of reach. I knew the problem was there I just didn’t know what it was. It wasn’t until I shared the paragraph with a friend who asked me why I’d switched tense that I realised the ALMIGHTY cock up.

Because of such a significant time  gap, I’d started editing in a completely different tense. It wouldn’t have been a problem, except I preferred the new tense to the old one, which means a total rewrite.

CUNDYFUNKINGBALLSACKS

*Takes deep breath*

“Do I really need to do a full tense rewrite for my whole manuscript?”

“Yes, Sacha, yes you do.”

&)@£%$*$7″$£$^””%$

Be smart, don’t do me and balls up your whole manuscript 2 meters from the finish line here is how… Continue reading

Writespiration #101 52 Weeks in 52 Words Week 5

writespiration-20172017 is the year of 52… 52 challenges over 52 weeks in 52 words.

Your challenge is to write your story using the weekly theme/prompt and write it in just 52 words…. EXACTLY, no more, no less.

Submit your entries in the comments or on a blog post and I post them the following week with the new prompt. You have until Sunday to enter (if you submit after Sunday, I can’t guarantee to get your entry in with the following week – I will, however, post it in the week after that).

Apologies to the number of you who posted pingbacks, that didn’t appear last week… Clearly, the WordPress gremlins are in full force. Soz for missing your entries. It still seems to be happening so it might be worth dropping a comment to say you have posted – just in case.  Continue reading

Bloggers Bash Tickets ON SALE NOW!!!

Today is a glorious day because it’s the day I sprinkle the Bloggisphere with magical glittery unicorn dust. Gathered using only the opposable thumbs of dwarf pixies and phoenix feathers dipped in liquid gold.

Wait, no. What I mean to say is,

THE BLOGGERS BASH TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE

Get them while they are hot folks because the venue does have a capacity limit, and that means tickets are limited.

It’s first come first serve. So, once the tickets are gone, you ain’t getting in. We have bouncers. **

Tickets are £10 that’s ten pounds sterling and can be brought using the PayPal button at the bottom, your ticket will be sent to you before the event.

And don’t forget, if you want to be in with the chance to win a bucket load of blogger and author prizes, we are running a blogging competition here, which closes at the end of Feb.

Continue reading