Q&A

Kindling Volume III: A Writer’s Edit Anthology

We caught up with Helen Scheuerer of Writer’s Edit to chat editing, publishing and the final instalment in their Kindling series, Kindling Volume III.

kindling

How does Kindling Volume III compare to previous volumes?

The main point of difference for me is actually behind-the-scenes, and how streamlined the production process has become. Both myself and the team have really mastered how to work together, how to manage submissions and authors and rounds of edits. We’ve always worked really well together, but over the past few years we’ve become a well-oiled machine, it’s been such a joy to work with them.

In terms of how the book itself compares to the previous volumes, the pieces are of the same high quality and originality, but each year I do notice different themes emerging. This year has seen a real focus on mental health in both the fiction and non-fiction, which is an incredibly important issue, especially among writers. I love that Kindling III is adding to the dialogue about self-care, and the challenges so many people face but don’t necessarily discuss in the open.

What were your aims when you first started the series?

My main goal was to publish a beautiful book that inspired writers. I wanted to learn about the practical side of publishing. There’s only so much you can learn in theory, and it’s not until you start working out the specifics of print, and the logistics, that you can really grasp the beauty (and the challenges) of the process.

I also wanted the Kindling books to provide new writers with the opportunity to be published in print. While I’m all about the incredible opportunities the online world offers us, as a writer myself, I know there’s nothing quite like the thrill of seeing your name and your words on a printed page. The Kindling volumes have given that thrill to so many different people now.

Can you tell us a little bit about the editing process behind Kindling?

Our editorial process is something that we’re incredibly proud of at Writer’s Edit. We work really closely with our authors, some of whom haven’t been published before and may not be familiar with how to work with an editor.

We have a submissions period and a reading period, where myself and the editors read every single submission and try to see its potential. We don’t expect pieces to be perfect when they land in our inbox, which sets us apart from a lot of other publications these days. We then shortlist pieces we think might work well in the book, edit them and then finalise our list. It’s a very extensive editing process, but one we think really benefits our authors, and of course, the final product.

What advice would you have for writers looking to get published and for potential publishers looking to get into the industry?

Write as much as you can and work out what kind of author you want to be. After you’ve done that, submit your work as much as possible and if you don’t succeed at first, try again. It sounds cheesy, but there are so many different reasons that writers aren’t published, so don’t assume you’re not good enough. If you’ve polished your piece as best you can, and you think it’s ready, it’ll find a home eventually.

As for potential publishers… Get experience, do an internship or reach out to people already in the thick of the action. Learn as much as you can and stay on top of the latest news and events in the industry. If you’re thinking about starting your own small press, at the risk of sounding like a Nike advertisement—just do it. You can sit around weighing up risks all day, but if you’ve got the passion for it, you can make anything work.

When is Kindling Volume III being released and how can readers get their hands on a copy?

We had a wonderful launch party for Kindling Vol III on November 16th, so it’s actually available now! You can get a copy via our website.

Copies are also available through Amazon.

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Helen Scheuerer is a creative writer/novelist from Sydney, and the Founding Editor of Writer’s Edit. She has a Bachelor of Creative Arts from the University of Wollongong and a Masters in Publishing from The University of Sydney. Helen freelances for a number of websites while she works on her own fiction and manages Writer’s Edit. Her debut novel is due to be released in 2017. She chronicles her writing process and current work over at www.HelenScheuerer.com.

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