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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > January 2018 > SUBSCRIBER SPOTLIGHT


Share your writing success stories. If you subscribe to Writing Magazine and would like to feature here, email Tina Jackson,

Rooting for the baddy

‘Have you ever noticed that the “baddies” in books, plays and films are often more interesting characters than the “goodies”?’ writes subscriber David


‘Bearing this in mind, I set out to write my biographical novel, King John – Two-Time Loser. This is the 18th historical novel I’ve written and the eighth to be published by Ravenswood Publishing, USA and edited by WM’s Gary Dalkin. ‘As a kid learning history, I was always told that King John was a bad king and probably the worst one ever to sit on the throne of England. The only redeeming feature of his reign was to seal (he never actually signed) the Magna Carta, and that was only because his noble barons forced him to. Rubbish! While carrying out the research for my book I found out that the knights had not done so out of altruistic or patriotic reasons. All they were thinking about was how to increase their own power and to pay fewer taxes. ‘I also discovered that much of what we were told about this allegedly Bad King was based on the contemporary Church chronicles. These were slanted heavily against him since he had seriously annoyed the Church by appointing his own man to be the new Archbishop of Canterbury and not the bishop that they had wanted.

‘In addition, in the C0did so.

The fact that Richard almost bankrupted England to pay for this foreign venture was not taken into account by the ecclesiastic authorities. And neither was the fact that Richard spent only six months of his ten-year reign actually living in England. ‘All in all, apart from learning about England’s supposedly Bad King John, I had a great time writing this novel.’

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About Writing Magazine

In this month's issue, we show you ten ways to improve your writing right now, and look at how to impress an editor and get your feature articles accepted. This month's star interview is crime bestseller and Rizzoli and Isles creator Tess Gerritsen, who opens her casebook to discuss murder, medicine and false memory. When you've polished your work and got it ready to submit, check out the Writers' News pages – packed with opportunities to get into print and competitions to enter, with £54,762 in writing prizes to be won.

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