December Newsletter 2019

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December Newsletter 2019
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The Story Mint is a vibrant and
inspirational community of writers who celebrate one another's successes. 


It's our last newsletter for the year and we would like to take the opportunity to reflect on the year that was.

This was a year of miracles and at the heart of those miracles lies people. Very, very special people who are the spirit and soul of this amazing community. Thank you everyone for your incredible support and encouragement.

After a successful year-long trial at Western Heights School in Auckland, NZ, Stylefit™ caught the attention of a private investor who played a huge role in ensuring we could explore what our next step should be. With Callaghan Innovation support we updated Stylefit™ and included relevant feedback for schools. 

This year we extended our trial to work with Year 9 learners at Waiuku College. The students helped us write the feedback which was helpful and also gave it their voice. 

The Advisory Board was re-established with Steve Corbett (CEO, AUT New Ventures Ltd), Blair Stevenson (CEO, Bravatrak), and Mahsa Mohaghegh (Senior Lecturer, AUT School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences). We thank them for their support and guidance over the year.

The Story Mint’s wonderful community of writers have continued to write amazing chapters and starters for serials and our stories continue to attract a strong readership from around the world. There were many many excellent chapters but one that stood out was the final chapter for Sailing by Rosemary Wakelin (Australia). If you haven't read it yet, what are you waiting for?  This year we introduced  our first serial with 1000 word chapters: Ripped from the Headlines. The story is playing out well and it's another story well worth checking out.

Thank you to all the contributors and to Donna McTavish (NZ) for editing chapters and making sure we kept regularly posting serial chapters. We also thank everyone for their feedback and for the work they’ve done to ensure we keep on delivering quality stories for readers.

We are very proud of our core group of serial writers whose writing skills have continued to improve over the years. Like most things, we need to always look to the future and make sure that we are staying fresh and relevant. To this end, we will be conducting a review of the philosophy behind the serials and our other services in the new year to help us to create an even better offering and attract new writers to our writing community.

Before we sign off for the last time in 2019, here are the two  most recently published chapters. Both are terrific, and both are waiting for you on The Story Mint website. 

Chapter 5 of Finding Linda by Joe Labrum. Here's a taster ....

"Ryder was busy pulling drawers out of a large chest of drawers and emptying them on the unmade bed. Out tumbled neatly folded pajamas, underwear, sweaters, all the usual things one would expect to find. It was obvious that whoever tossed the apartment didn’t make it into the bedroom before they were chased out.  Finally, as she carefully sorted through the woman’s personal items. Samantha’s fingers touched a small envelope. She pulled it out, opened it and poured from it a small silver key with a Triskelion engraving on a gold chain. It matched the one found by the wall."

And Suraya offers us a masterclass in the use of dialogue in Chapter 5 of Deception ....

'Somewhat bemused by the scholar’s cryptic words Lord Castleroy made his way to the Ash tree where Queen Katherine awaited him.

She sat on a wooden seat, looking sulky. “You are late, very, very late,” she chided.

“I apologise my dear.” He frowned and looked towards the scholars’ library. “I have just had the queerest conversation one could imagine.”

“Oh,” she giggled. “Those with their noses stuck in books are the queerest men I have ever known.”'


The Story Mint team wish you a very Merry Christmas and all the very best for 2020.
May it be prosperous, successful and, above all, may the Muse always be with you.

The Story Mint team

Fear of Using the Wrong Word 

While reading out loud isn’t a replacement for editing or dictionaries, don’t underestimate your ear for language and your own intuition.

Linda Alley
Author of The Fearless Writing Guide 
Order Linda's free copy and subscribe to her newsletter.


We have picked two of our favourite serials to highlight. There were so many it was hard to pick.

Finding Linda
by Joe Labrum
Chapter 5 by Suraya Dewing


Who to send your starters and chapters to:
If you have a starter send it to:
If you've written a chapter send it to
Book Reviews

by Roald Dahl 
Review by Sameer Nagarajan

The last of the collections, on War by #Roalddahl.

More than half the book is his personal memoir of his experiences in the war. Touching, though perhaps a bit too detailed. The short stories that follow are good - in parts. I got the impression that War isn’t his forte, but for a loyal fan (me!) it’s a good read anyway. 


Membership News
Writing Tips

From Jeff Goins

"So… you want to be a writer?

This all begins with believing you already are a writer. So let’s start there. My own journey of becoming a writer was an awakening of sorts — to who I already was. Maybe yours will be similar.

A writer is a writer when he says he is.
—Steven Pressfield

Anyone who writes is a writer, but that doesn’t mean they’re a very good one. So let’s talk about how to become a better writer. We’ll begin with the basics — here are seven key lessons (with links to important articles about each):

Membership Benefits
As a member you get these great membership benefits.
We edit manuscripts for members and prepare them for publication. We also publish and promote their books on social media.

Unlimited use of Stylefit™, a writing edge you will get nowhere else.
  • Belong to an international writing community
  • Your writing promoted to over 25,000 online readers when you write a serial chapter
  • Have one of more of your chapters published in our Anthology, Everyone Has a Story
  • Special member rates for editing, assessment and personalised feedback on individual pieces of writing
  • Promotion to agents/publishers
  • Workshops

To join, go to membership
Happy writing!

Join The Story Mint and book to write a chapter in one of
our many serials, use Stylefit™ and meet other writers.
The first 10 memberships will receive a FREE assessment
of a piece of writing (up to 20,000 words)

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