Archive | advice

Madeleine Milburn judges the Caledonian Award

Caledonia Novel Award 2018

  To all unpublished writers!   The brilliant Caledonia Novel Award is now accepting entries for its 2018 competition. Based in Scotland, but with an international outlook, the award is open to all unpublished or self-published works from around the world, and has an excellent reputation for discovering writers who go on to sign deals Read More

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C.L. Taylor and Nuala Ellwood at CrimeFest 2017

  CrimeFest 2017, which took place in Bristol this weekend, saw two of our authors participate on panels across the weekend discussing families in crime, debut novels and war crime.   C.L. Taylor, the No. 2 Sunday Times bestselling author of The Escape and well-seasoned CrimeFest star, took part in a panel called You Are Read More

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dave lowe collection

Writing Middle Grade Fiction

  Today, in the midst of Bologna Book Fair, we’re sharing a wonderful piece from Dave Lowe, author of the MY HAMSTER series and, more recently, THE MUMBELIEVABLE CHALLENGE and THE INCREDIBLE DADVENTURE which are published this Thursday by Bonnier Zaffre / Piccadilly Press.     When I tell people that I’m a children’s author, Read More

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MMLA Web Site Shoot 158

The Art of Non-Fiction

With the launch of our brand-new non-fiction writing competition ‘Inspire Us’, Literary Agent Anna Hogarty talks about the five elements she’s looking for in a stand-out voice.   1: Teach me something about the world The best non-fiction enables the reader to see the world in new ways. WILD SWANS opened me up to the Read More

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Alice Sutherland-Hawes: What I’m Looking For

  Actively looking for: Middle Grade for 9-12 (standalone and with series potential); tween stories to fit between MG and YA; quirky picture book illustrators; non-rhyming picture book texts; brilliant world-building; diverse and marginalised authors across all ages and genres.     Alongside my role as Rights Agent, I am also growing a Children’s, YA Read More

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My Sister's Bones

How to Write a Crime Novel – Top Tips from author of MY SISTER’S BONES

Nuala Ellwood, author of MY SISTER’S BONES, shares her top writing tips on ‘How to Write A Crime Novel’. My Sister’s Bones was published in hardback on 9th February by Penguin Random House, Viking, to great critical acclaim.     Nuala Ellwood is the daughter of an award-winning journalist. She was inspired by her father Read More

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The Bookseller’s Frankfurt interview with agent Madeleine Milburn

The Frankfurt Book Fair this month saw an abundance of deals being made by the agency – including 37 languages now sold for C.J. Tudor’s debut The Chalk Man – Madeleine took a moment to speak to Tom Tivnan from The Bookseller about the fair, taking a book from the slushpile to six figure book Read More

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MM Agency Team Top Fives – Make Us Scared

To celebrate the launch of our Summer Writing Competition, we choose our top five books on the same theme: Make Us Scared. We cannot wait to find a brand new author we can add to our lists. Madeleine: The Likeness by Tana French The Woods by Harlan Coben The Ice Twins by S K Tremayne Read More

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‘Writing IS a Weird Job…’ by Fiona Barton

 ‘Writing IS a weird job, basically sitting in a room with a cast of people who don’t exist, but I love it too.’ Psychological suspense authors Fiona Barton (The Widow) and Kate Hamer (The Girl in the Red Coat) discuss the ins and outs of writing: from planning and publicity to their inspiration. Barton reflects Read More

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Q&A with Madeleine Milburn

Madeleine is a Literary Agent and the Director of Madeleine Milburn Ltd. She formed the agency at the beginning of 2012 and it has quickly become one of the top literary agencies in the UK. Madeleine represents a wide range of bestselling authors writing literary and popular fiction including crime and thrillers, psychological suspense, literary, Read More

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Literary Agent Madeleine Milburn Chooses Winners for BritCrime Competition

Following a competition with BritCrime, Madeleine Milburn has chosen the winning pitches that were tweeted to her during the festival. The winners win a personal critique of their covering letter, first three chapters and synopsis. Here are the winning three pitches: @JoyKluver 3 bed rural cottage needs tlc, great views, large garden with mature shrubs, pond Read More

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Win a personal critique with Madeleine Milburn as part of BritCrime

11th – 13th July If you’re a debut crime writer and you’d like the chance to receive a personal critique from agent Madeleine Milburn, tweet @agentmilburn a one-line pitch or a tantalising question about your unpublished crime novel between the 11-13 July. Make sure you include the hashtag #BritCrime. Milburn will pick the top three Read More

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Novelicious: Want a Literary Agent to Critique Your Query Letter?

On Tuesday 3 February Madeleine will be critiquing cover letters for Novelicious’s Agent Pitch Critique! From 9am you will have 24 hours to post your query letters in the comments of a dedicated post on Novelicious. Throughout the event, literary agent Madeleine Milburn will critique each one, offering ideas and advice on how to hone Read More

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Madeleine Milburn Agency features in the 2015 Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook

The Madeleine Milburn Agency is privileged to announce our contribution to the 2015 Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook  The annual edition of the best-selling guide to all aspects of the media and how to write and get published, the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook is now in its 108th edition.  The Yearbook is acknowledged by the publishing Read More

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1 day ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. Writing tips from Carolyn Jess-Cooke and Marcia Moody CAROLYN JESS-COOKE How to write while caring Read More

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2 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. JANET MACLEOD TROTTER Christmas in Kathmandu The most extraordinary Christmas I ever experienced was Read More

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3 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. L.A. Jones I have a confession to make. I sit and talk to people Read More

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4 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. HOLLY MARTIN Do you believe? I love the idea of Santa Claus.  As a Read More

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11 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. EVIE HUNTER (Eileen Gormley and Caroline McCall) Christmas Memories Eileen Gormley Christmas 1998, I Read More

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15 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. GEOFFREY MALONE The Coldest Christmas One of the coldest Christmases I have ever spent Read More

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16 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. RADHIKA SANGHANI How to survive the festive season 1) Presents There is nothing worse Read More

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20 days ’til Christmas: The Literary Agency Advent Calendar

In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come. KAREN ROSS So this time last year, my chance of getting a book deal Read More

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Writing Competitions 2014 judged by UK Literary Agent

The Madeleine Milburn Agency is judging two major writing competitions next year – these competitions are great opportunities for writers to get recognition from the book trade and the general public. The Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize is the first competition that Madeleine Milburn will be judging in May 2014. Lucy Cavendish College Cambridge has a Read More

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Things I’m often asked as a Literary Agent: Q & A session with a leading London Literary Agency

What kind of books are you looking for? In short, everything! I’m looking for all types of accessible literary and commercial fiction, crime and thrillers, young adult, children’s, and popular non-fiction. When I read a submission it’s usually very clear within the first few pages whether the voice and concept are strong enough. No matter what Read More

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UK literary agent tips for new writers

From my Masterclass Courses, Q&A panels and one-to-one sessions at the Winchester Writers’ Conference this year, I’ve compiled some tips for new writers.  These should hopefully help you pitch your work successfully and capture an agent’s attention! There are key things to think about whilst preparing a submission letter.  I personally receive between 20 and Read More

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Help for writers

 As an agent, I’m often involved in a lot of events aimed at helping writers hone their craft.  I thought it would be useful to mention some of the organisations I’ve been involved with recently.  Last month, I spoke at a two-day event co-hosted by Psychologies Magazine and Writers & Artists in their Bloomsbury offices.  This consisted of workshops, Q&A sessions and one-to-one appointments.  Writers & Artists Read More

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New York 2013

I spent last week in New York on business seeing over 50 editors from 11 major US publishing companies.  Each day tended to be ordered around two major publishers, with thirty minute back-to-back appointments at each.  Day 1 consisted of Little, Brown and HarperCollins; day 2: Simon & Schuster and Random House; day 3: Penguin and Houghton Read More

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Character or Plot?

I attended the first in a new series of literary events at the Bloomsbury Institute last night, focused on how to plot the perfect murder mystery.  Speakers included James Runcie, Anne Zouroudi and Claire McGowan. Interestingly, the talk evolved into a popular debate about Plot vs. Character.  I am constantly telling new writers that a Read More

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Have you written a crime, thriller or psychological suspense novel?

Competition: The Madeleine Milburn Literary, TV & Film Agency is launching a new Crime, Thriller and Psychological Suspense side to the Agency, and is looking to represent new talented crime writers.  The Agency will offer representation to writers they find exceptional, and in depth editorial feedback to runners up.   To Enter: Please submit the following material in one Read More

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Part 3: What does a literary agent do?

For my final entry on ‘What does a literary agent do?’ I will address deal making. Every single day I am negotiating top deals in the UK, US and foreign markets, including film and TV rights.  This aspect of the being an agent gives my writers a platform to be successful.  A writer’s career will grow Read More

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My two top Literary Consultants

Some literary consultants are fantastic at improving the standard of a manuscript before submitting to agents and publishers.  Two literary consultants I hugely recommend are as follows: The Shelley Instone Literary Consultancy, established in 2011 in order to give writers the very best advice and critiques in the business. Focussing entirely on children’s books, Shelley has the Read More

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Covering Letters

I was recently asked to be on a panel at the How To Get Published conference in the Wellcome Collection giving advice about submitting work to agents.   The panel was chaired by Jeremy Lewis and included myself,  Carole Blake, James Gill and Patrick Walsh. We were each given a batch of covering letters in advance, sent in by Read More

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Writers’ & Artists’ new enterprise

Just as I was thinking it would be a good idea to offer one-on-one consultations to new authors, I was contacted by Writers’ & Artists’ to host their new enterprise, Beat the Rejection Clinics.  Rather than offering an editorial focus, I sit down with each writer and discuss the commmercial side of publishing.  Discussing how Read More

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Happy Publication Day: Agent Buston interviews Carrie Duffy

Congratulations to Carrie Duffy on the official publication of her debut novel IDOL.  HarperCollins publish on the 18th August and have secured fantastic promotional slots, including W H Smith retail, W H Smith travel, Asda and Amazon.   Carrie read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Trinity College, Oxford, before training as an actress.  IDOL is her sizzling first novel set Read More

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Agent Buston interviews Victoria Fox

Known as the sexiest writer in the business, Victoria Fox is the author of the fabulous HOLLYWOOD SINNERS, following the lives of four celebrity couples around Hollywood, Vegas and London.  Since MIRA published in  April 2011, Victoria has become a bit of a celebrity herself, from appearing on  The Vanessa Show in May,  building a huge online presence,  to her photo shoot on the Read More

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Agent Buston interviews bestselling author, Debby Holt

Debby Holt is a bestselling author of popular women’s fiction, published by Simon & Schuster in the UK.   Her bestselling books have extremely striking titles including The Ex-Wife’s Survival Guide, Annie May’s Black Book, The Trouble with Marriage, Love Affairs for Grown-Ups, Recipe for Scandal, and Friends, Lies and Alibis. It has taken a huge amount of talent, perseverance and drive to get where she is today.  She is married with five Read More

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THE ‘ONE LINE’ PITCH

A quick piece of advice – learn how to pitch your book in one  sentence.  It is invaluable to get to the ‘core’ of your book when you are discussing your work with friends, writing groups and potential agents.   Agents use them when pitching to editors, editors use them when pitching to sales teams, Read More

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THREE QUICK TIPS

These tips are surprisingly obvious, but time and time again I read submissions that are weak in one, if not all, of these areas: KEEP YOUR CHAPTERS SHORT: each chapter should be between 10 and 15 pages long to keep the reader’s attention.  Create a mini drama in every chapter and have a hook at the end of Read More

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