Want to be a published author?
One of Inclusive Journalism Cymru’s aims is to create and offer opportunities for those of us who may have been marginalised or excluded by the industry. That’s why we’ve partnered with Seren Books on an exciting project that will publish work from ten of our members.
The idea is that the process will be as open, inclusive and supportive as possible. It’s open to anyone who’s a member of Inclusive Journalism Cymru, regardless of whether you’ve been published before. In fact, hearing new and unique perspectives and stories is the point. Here’s how you can get involved.
“Cymru and I” will be a collection of ten non-fiction essays. They can be about pretty much anything, but should aim to reflect something interesting and unique from your experience of contemporary life in Wales. We want to leave this invitation as open as possible, because often the best things are the most unexpected.
How will the book look and feel?
- The final 240 page book will include ten essays of around 7000 words each
- The essays should be thought provoking and hold up an honest mirror to Wales. All ideas will be considered, but you could write about:
- An aspect of your life or the area where you live
- Your own personal experience or ideas
- A view on discrimination or misrepresentation
- A travel piece on Wales or an experience of the natural world
- Seren Books is an English language publisher, so the essays should be in English. We are of course exploring similar opportunities in Cymraeg
- The book will be published in or around June 2023
What support will be available?
We’ll be providing a range of support to help you develop and submit your idea. That starts with a Q&A at 7.30pm on Monday 6th February with the team from Inclusive Journalism Cymru and Seren Books. There you’ll be able to meet the editors, ask questions about the process or talk through an idea that you might already have.
We’ll also be holding a “Masterclass” on longform writing, at 7.00pm on Wednesday 15th March. There we’ll be joined by brilliant special guests, Suyin Haynes – Head of Editorial at gal-dem – and Author and academic Professor Charlotte Williams.They’ll be sharing their expert advice on developing and writing long-form essays and articles.
If your idea is chosen for the book, you’ll be supported by a dedicated Editor from the Inclusive Journalism Cymru team, who’ll work with you to make sure you have everything you need to help you produce your best possible work.
Will I be paid?
Yes. It’s important to us that contributors are paid for their work, so each writer will receive £1200 for their chapter of “Cymru and I”.
What's the timeline?
- 23rd January – Applications Open
- 6th February – Q&A Event Online
- 20th February – Applications close
- 27th February – Decisions made and all applicants notified soon after
- 15th March – Longform Writing Masterclass Online
- 14th April – First drafts to be submitted
- 5th May – Final drafts to be submitted
- June/July – Book published
How do I apply?
We know that 7000 words is a lot to write, but we want to make the application part of the process as easy as possible. So simply tell us your essay idea by sending us an example of what the first two paragraphs might look like, plus two more paragraphs explaining the theme(s) of the rest of the piece.
Those first two paragraphs should give us a sense of the style and approach of your writing – so originality, flair and something that will grab the attention of the reader would be great.
The explanation of the themes can be much more factual, setting out the ideas you want to explore and how you might do that.
The total word count of your application should be no more than 500 words, so do bear that in mind. We want to make sure the process is fair, whilst also not putting too much of a burden on you in the initial stages.
Send your idea to email@example.com by 20th February. Remember, this opportunity is only open to members of Inclusive Journalism Cymru, so please use the email address that you used to join the network. Don’t worry if you’re not a member yet though, it’s completely free to sign up and it only takes a couple of minutes!
We’ll let you know as soon as we’ve made a decision, and will aim to offer supportive feedback to anyone whose idea isn’t commissioned.
If there’s anything we can do to make this process more accessible for you, just let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll work with you to find the best solution.
Sign up for our Q&A
Join us online for a Q&A with the team from Inclusive Journalism Cymru and Seren Books to find out more about the process, discuss ideas you might have and ask any questions.