Stories beyond the book

The Cure for Sleep with Tanya Shadrick on Substack
Desire, time, longing, friendship, regret, faith, promises… what stories could you tell about those?
Subscribe to my free online story-sharing community on Substack and start turning your dream of being a writer into reality…

My Substack is a place for you to develop your voice, discover like-minds and find readers for your words. Share your own true tales on themes from The Cure for Sleep then enjoy seeing your work curated here in the story archive.

More and more of my Substack contributors are going on to prize listings, course acceptances and book deals – just as I hoped! – and I’d love that to happen for you too.

Click on each of the themes below to discover what other subscribers have already written – or explore by author name in the ever-expanding A to Z of contributors.

Then learn how to add your own stories to the project…

Stories beyond the book
season 2 (2022)

“It could be enough, more than enough, to be a person occupied for the rest of my life by what might look to others only an idiotically simple gathering in of small and obscure moments: the collecting of stories from ordinary people like me.”

The Cure For Sleep
Stories beyond the book
season 1 (2021)

A to Z of contributors

In my community of several thousand active Substack readers, there is also an ever-growing number who are taking the next step of becoming writers for the project. And between them, they have already produced hundreds of stories. Click on any of the names (in this regularly updated list) to read a sample story from each of these authors…

Amanda Scott | Amelia H | Amy Boyd | Amy Millios | Andrea Day | Anna Francis | Barrie Thomson | Caitlin Cornec | Caro Giles (writing as Caro Fentiman) | Cathy Robinson | Charlotte Dawson | Debbie Yearsley Davidson | Diane Auby | E E Rhodes | Elena | Emily Tamas | Emma Willsteed | Faye Davidson | Fionnuala O’Shea | Genevieve Dutton | Geoff Cox | Heidi Reinsch | Helen Callear | Holly Nicholls | Jackie Goode | Jan Hillier | Jane Adams | Jean Wilson | Jen Ratcliffe | Jenni | Jess | Jo Regan | Jo Sinclair | Joanne Baker | Julie Benham | Kaz Field | Kerry Whitley | Kit Dawson | Laine Thompson | Larissa Reid | Laura | Louise Newman | Louise Ratcliffe | Louise Stead | Lucy Lichen | Margaret O’Brien | Maria James | Maria Simoes | Marilyn Daniels | Michelle Geffken | Mike Winter | Miranda R Waterton | Molly Cooper | Monique Kennedy | Nicola Pitchford | Oakley Torrens | Paul Gamble | Paul Miller | Rowan Ambrose | Ruth Petherick | Sally Harrop | Sara Stegen | Sarah Connor | Sarah Playforth | Sharon C | Sheila de Courcy | Sheila Knell | Sophie Pierce | Steve Harrison | Stevie | Sue Reed | Sue Tanton | Susan Bennett | Suse | Tamsin Grainger | Tim LeRoy | Tracey Kennedy | Tracey Mayor | Vanessa Wright

What subscribers say

“It’s a special act of generosity when a writer you respect asks for responses to extracts from their work. Fear held me back but then I responded to the piece on regret. No regrets”

Tim LeRoy, contributor

“If you’re writing away by yourself and anxious about showing your work to others, here’s a lovely opportunity to share in a kind, supportive space. Have a look. Take the leap. I’m so glad I did”

Sheila de Courcy, contributor

“It’s a privilege to be a small part of this reflective conversation and the community it brings into being”

Nicola Pitchford, contributor

“I’m so glad to have constellated the courage and drafted something that assembles peace”

E E Rhodes, contributor

“When I first saw the word limit, I thought, no, that’s not for me, I cannot do that. Then, I did! I really believe that I have become a more confident and better writer through the word constraints, it really made me think about what could be stripped from the writing.

Sheila Knell, contributor

How to take part

Each of my monthly newsletters over on Substack takes a key moment from the book, inviting you to respond to that theme with a short true tale of your own – using the comments field to share a story of up to 300 words.

Importantly, all the monthly themes stay open without deadlines for your contributions, so you are free to write for as many of the prompts as you wish.

All stories that respect the contributor guidelines and the foundational spirit of the project – inclusivity, kindness, respect for the privacy and feelings of others – are then curated on this site.

The monthly newsletter also includes extras such as my recommended texts for emerging writers and links to events and conversations happening around The Cure for Sleep.

I hope you will join me there and I look forward to reading your words.

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