FAQ: Open House

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If you have questions regarding our Open House event, please have a look below to find an answer at our frequently asked questions. If your question is not answered below, please contact us here.

If I’m not a member, can I book in?

Our Open House events are exclusive to Writing NSW members. However, you can become a member easily via our website or by phoning us on (02) 9555 9757. Being a Writing NSW member will not only allow you to attend Open House, but will also give you discounts to our courses, special access to writing groups and our writers’ spaces at our Callan Park building, exclusive access to our First Friday events and many other benefits which you can read about here>>

How do I make a booking?

On Monday 29 May 2023, we will open up for Expressions of Interest. You will submit a form with your contact details and the genre of your manuscript. We will be in touch within 48 hours to let you know whether you have been successful in securing a place. In order to secure your place, you will need to pay the $45 invoice within 2 days.

How do I submit my work?

You must submit the first 6,500 words of a manuscript to us by Monday 17 July 2023, 5pm. The editors will read the manuscript in preparation for the Open House day on 18 August 2023.

You will need to submit one Word document as follows:

  • the document name is your name (ie. Jane Doe.doc)
  • a one-page synopsis of your work, up to 300 words (need help with your synopsis? Please see our guide to writing a synopsis)
  • a short note about yourself as a writer including why you love to write (maximum 150 words)
  • in word format: size 12, Times New Roman font, line spacing 1.5 – 2 (double spacing)
  • with page numbers.

If you have successfully secured a place, we will email you with more details about how to submit your manuscript.

What genre can my manuscript submission be?

You can submit the first 6,500 words of a manuscript in the following genres:

  • Historical fiction
  • Commercial women’s fiction (from uplit to domestic noir)
  • Memoir
  • Narrative and literary non-fiction
  • Activism and politics
  • Nature and science writing
  • Pop culture and criticism
  • Literary thrillers

Is it important to follow the formatting guidelines?

Our formatting guidelines are industry standard. By following these guidelines, you are demonstrating your professionalism.

Your file must follow these formatting guidelines:

  • Please provide the document in Microsoft Word format, saved in your name (i.e. Jane Doe.doc)
  • Line spacing: 1.5–2
  • 12 pt Times New Roman font
  • Margins: minimum 3 cm all round (Word default margins are fine)
  • Page numbers: consecutive from beginning to end
  • Paragraphing: indent all paragraphs except the first paragraph of a new chapter or section. Only put spaces between paragraphs where you wish to indicate a section break
  • Left aligned (this means the text on the right edge of the page is ragged).

How much time will I have with the editor?

You will have ten minutes in a one-on-one session with a member of the Ultimo Press editorial team. You will receive feedback, and can make notes and ask questions. Please note, you will receive verbal feedback only.

Why are the consultations ten minutes?

We want to ensure as many writers can benefit from this opportunity as possible. If you are seeking more feedback on your manuscript, consider booking into one of our manuscript assessments or undertaking a mentorship.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

Feedback may cover topics such as plot, structure, character development, dialogue, pace, point of view, voice, tone, style and/or readership.

Will this event sell out?

Our past Open House events have sold out within a week. It’s always best to book in as soon as you are certain you can attend. Please note that all bookings are non-refundable and ineligible for credit.

Who is Ultimo Press?

Ultimo Press is an independent publisher established in 2020 with the simple ambition to become home to Australia’s best storytellers.

Distinctive and discerning, they value quality above all else, and aspire to be known for their creativity and commitment to their authors. They want to excite readers of general and literary fiction (especially the sweet spot in between), and discover non-fiction that inspires and ignites. Their hallmarks are editorial excellence, arresting design, dynamic marketing and publicity, respect and loyalty to their authors, and publishing compelling new voices and original perspectives that reflect the full spectrum of Australian life.

You can find out more about Ultimo Press via their website: ultimopress.com.au  

Will there be food and drinks on the day?

Please bring your own lunch as there are no cafes within short walking distance. Feel free to use our communal kitchen’s fridge and microwave. Cafes are located on Balmain Rd, walking towards Victoria Rd, however, they are a 10-minute+ walk. We have a kitchen with tea and coffee making facilities which you are welcome to help yourself to throughout the day.  

What if I have accessibility requirements?

If you have accessibility requirements, please make us aware of them as soon as possible when you book in. Parts of this event may take place upstairs, so please let us know if you are unable to use stairs and we will endeavour to make alternate arrangements.  

I can’t make this date, will you run this event again?

We usually run an Open House event at least once a year with a variety of publishers.

Do you have a cancellation policy?

Unfortunately we cannot offer refunds or credits for Open House events.

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