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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Budding Writer who bought this Book says....
I find Della Galton's book a very useful and highly informative read. It's well-presented and easy to dip into. Her advice is not only about the 'creative and literary' aspects of writing short stories for magazines but also covers practical items e.g.tax and keeping track of your stories.
I also like the fact that she includes advice and tips from other professional...
Published on 31 Jan 2009 by Georgie B1

versus
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit too self-promoting
I think the advice and techniques presented are realistic and helpful. It is a very positive and encouraging book for anyone with doubts about continuing to write.

What grated on me, however, was the large number of quotes from the authors own published works. And some of those seemed so horribly cliched that I felt myself squirming.
Perhaps cliche is all...
Published 17 months ago by AgentMulderUK


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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Budding Writer who bought this Book says...., 31 Jan 2009
By 
Georgie B1 (Northwest England) - See all my reviews
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I find Della Galton's book a very useful and highly informative read. It's well-presented and easy to dip into. Her advice is not only about the 'creative and literary' aspects of writing short stories for magazines but also covers practical items e.g.tax and keeping track of your stories.
I also like the fact that she includes advice and tips from other professional writers, who like Della, are well-known and experienced in their field.
I would definitely recommend this book, both to complete novices and to those like myself, who are already a little way along 'the write road'.
Susan Haniford
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars instructive and entertaining, 23 April 2009
By 
H. Seymour "Helen" (Leeds) - See all my reviews
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I found this book extremely helpful. First of all I trusted the person writing it: Della Galton is an extremely gifted and prolific author and admired by many short story writers. She knows exactly what she's doing and she shares it directly, without any vague waffle. She starts off by saying that market research is the most important thing, something many aspiring writers miss, but which really is critical if there is to be any hope of selling the story. She then goes through the various aspects of writing, including where to get ideas, how to plot, how to write dialogue, thw twist ending, humour and so on. I would highly recommend this book as a starting point for any aspiring short story writer.

Secondly, I found it a very entertaining read. Della Galton comes across as very likeable and I would imagine this rubs off on her characters and her mode of story telling. Despite her obvious success, she seems very humble and modest, with a good sense of humour and the ability to laugh at herself. Often when I read 'how to write' books I am struck by the author's self importance, but there is nothing like that here.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best creative writing books around, 20 Jan 2009
By 
Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
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Almost any magazine which publishes short stories will feature one by this author so she writes from wide experience. She discusses plot, dialogue and characters amongst many other aspects of short story writing. Points are demonstrated by reference to quotations from her own and other author's published work. Each short chapter ends with hints and tips from other short story writers, novelists, editors and publishers. If you follow all the advice in this book you stand the best possible chance of having your stories published. I recommend it to anyone who writes short stories. It's an interesting read as well and once you've read it you'll want to keep it on your shelves to refer to.
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36 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth Every Penny, 9 Nov 2008
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Dr. H. Kara (England) - See all my reviews
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I have had some small success with short stories already - and I learned a great deal from this book. Della Galton doesn't just tell, she shows. So she tells you to research the market - and then shows you several ways to do so. She covers lots of topics such as writing with humour, finding a good title, and stories of different types (crime, ghost, twist etc). With each topic, she takes pains to explain how you can tackle it and improve your writing. Her years of experience as a teacher of creative writing, and as a prolific and excellent short story writer, shine through in this book.

Yet Ms Galton is not at all arrogant. She uses her own mistakes for illustration, pokes fun at herself, and uses excerpts of others' stories, and tips and ideas from other short story writers, as well as her own. All this makes her book a delightful as well as an instructive read. I'd recommend this book to anyone who wants to write and sell short stories. Unless you're a very experienced short story writer yourself, I'm sure you will find some useful pointers and ideas here. And even if you are a very experienced short story writer, you might well find it useful for revision. Highly recommended.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The only 'self help/guide' book I have reached the end of!, 14 Jan 2010
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Della Galton's book on writing short stories is extremely helpful, easy to read but above all fun. I know that sounds very cliched but I really enjoyed reading it. It took me two days to read it from cover to cover and it was exactly what I wanted.

No great big long technical chapters on plotting and character but just bite size pieces of helpful advice that will hopefully steer me in the right direction. It is because of this simplified style that I was able to whizz through it so quickly and I marked many of the pages so I can come back to the most helpful parts.

But don't get me wrong, it is not a lightweight book that just skims over the issues. There is a lot of information in there but it is structured in such a way that it never becomes tedious and you never get that familiar "well I must plod on - I have paid for it after all" feeling.

I buy various guide/help books on different subjects (the most recent being an 'improve your handwriting' book as mine is awful) but I don't think I have ever actually made it to the end of one - let alone in two days.

Highly recommended and a wonderful introduction to writing short stories.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Queen of the womags tells you how it's done, 8 Dec 2008
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Della Galton is not called the Queen of the Womags (amongst those of us who strive for even half her success) for nothing, and in this book she shares all her secrets with us. It's written in a very approachable, no nonsense style. The fact is, as Della tells us, if you want to make money from writing, then you have to treat it as a business. But that doesn't mean you can just knock out any old thing. It takes practice and skill, and the ability to put together a story that resonates with editors.

She uses extracts from her own stories and others to show you how it's done, and other writers add their own tips for success. When you see the extracts from Della's work, you understand why she's done so well. She is in a class of her own, which makes her sharing her knowledge with us all the more wonderful.

I tried the first exercise and got a short story out of it straight away.

This book is a great addition to any writer's toolbox.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A quick easy guide, 9 Aug 2010
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You could read the chapters in this book in any order that you require, it is an easy read, I read it in one sitting. Helpful hints and tips, sometimes a bit on the "common sense" side though. A good book if you're just starting out in writing short stories.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must-have, 22 Mar 2009
This book is a must-have for wanna be magazine short story writers. Reading it suddenly things fell into place for me and I realised where my stories had gone wrong in the past. There are some clever writing exercises given that aren't too arduous and actually do get you writing. I also appreciated the quotes and insights from other successful short story writers. This is the best book of its kind that I have come across.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sound Advice from the Expert, 9 Nov 2008
By 
Simon Whaley (UK) - See all my reviews
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Pick up any short story magazine and you can practically guarantee that you'll find one of Della's short stories in it. Della is most certainly an expert in her field and the advice she gives here is sound and practical. As someone who has had a few short stories published myself, I'm always looking for hints and tips about how to improve my stories and Della has provided ample here. Thanks for the advice about the use of the pluperfect tense in flashbacks. I know I've been going wrong here.

I will say though, that I wasn't impressed with the production quality of the book that I purchased through Amazon. In my opinion, the paper quality was poor and the proofreading/layout could have been executed better. But none of this is Della's fault, and the advice that she provides inside is spot on, which is why I've given it 5 stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a fab book!!!!!!!!!!, 1 Jan 2011
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I've been writing short stories on and off for a few years now and bought this book cos I'd heard Della was good and I really want to get better at writing short stories now. I found this book excellent at helping me with weak spots I knew I had, like plotting, I always thought there was no use in writing a story unless I knew what the end was going to be. Della says the opposite, just write and work out the ending later. That seems to me to make so much more sense and is much more liberating than sweating buckets over a story you haven't even written yet but can't decide on the ending. Also this book showed me ways to do what I thought I could do ok but could do better, Della suggests using 'word pictures' to bring a text alive so instead of saying 'the dog ran upstairs,' you say 'the dog ran up the stairs two at a time with paws as big as tea cups,' because it makes reading that much more interesting. It's a lovely read too and thoroughly recommended.
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