Writing Editor Blogs

The Writer’s Dig
by Brian A. Klems
Online Editor Brian A. Klems covers everything about writing on his blog. From grammar to writing tips to publishing advice to best practices in finding an agent to fueling your creative fire, he’s got you covered by pulling in great tips (not just from himself but from from other published and award-winning authors, too). Check out his advice—your writing career will thank you. Read Brian’s Blog


Guide to Literary Agents Blog
by Cris Freese
The GLA blog keeps track of all news related to literary agents and writing conferences. Common features include agent interviews, new agency listings, agency profiles, upcoming conferences of interest, contests and other publishing opportunities, valuable writing resources, submission tips and information, and a blogroll of other agent blogs. Read the Guide to Literary Agents Blog


There Are No Rules
by the editors of Writer’s Digest
Get on the cutting edge of today’s publishing trends and how authors can succeed in a world of fast-paced technological change, guided by the editors of Writer’s Digest. You’ll get an inside look at the work, play, and passion of the publishing business and find practical tools for success. Read There Are No Rules


Poetic Asides
by Robert Brewer
Published poet Robert Lee Brewer blogs on issues affecting poets from the poet’s perspective. As the editor of Writer’s Market, Brewer also shares insights on the publishing industry, especially as it relates to poetry and the poetry markets. He also explains poetic forms, interviews other published poets, and provides the occasional poetry prompt. Read Robert’s Blog


The First 5 (Simple) Steps for Growing Readership on Your Blog

One of my posts last month, The Benefits of Blogging, received a number of valuable comments. For anyone wondering about the value of blogging, this is a must-read for the variety of perspectives. The next question that naturally arises—after you decide to blog—is how to gain readership. Before I mention specific tactics, 3 things...

Real Writers Never Give Up

Pulitzer Prize winning author Junot Diaz offers some inspirational, powerful words about not giving up in this month’s Oprah magazine.  I think they are good words to hear on a Monday, good words to get us started, as writers, on the first day of the week.  This is my goal for the week: write...

Tip & Prompt: A Writer's Best Friends

What better way to kick a week off than with two of a writer’s best friends: a tip and a prompt? Here, in continuation of Zac’s countdown of his favorite tips from WD in 2009, is #14: “Know the adage ‘There’s no such thing as bad publicity’ isn’t necessarily true. You can go too...

Chuck's question: Am I wasting my time if I don't live in L.A.?

Hey, folks—   Today’s question comes from Chuck, who writes…   “I am writing some spec screenplays, and a pilot.  But let’s face it – I will never move to LA.  Meetings – yes.  Move – no.  Am I wasting my time?  I’ve met managers who have said “Send me something when you have...

The Essential Parts of a Novel Synopsis

1. The Opening Hook You must start strong with the novel synopsis. Agents and editors want to be engaged when they're up at night, plowing through submissions. If they don't like the opening, they won't get through the rest of it.

Cover Band Soap Opera: Def Leppard's 'Pour Some Sugar on Me'

For anyone who follows the ridiculous adventures of my Cincinnati rock cover band, you may have noticed that I don’t put video up of us.  Truth is, I’m self-conscious.  Someone missed a note, or this didn’t sound right, or that’s blurry, blah blah blah.    Well, no more of that. This is my band playing...

Agent Advice: Byrd Leavell of Waxman Literary Agency

his installment features Byrd Leavell of Waxman Literary Agency. Byrd began his career at Carlisle & Company and then served as an agent at InkWell Management and Venture Literary. He is looking for: General fiction, Mystery, Reference, Biography, Business/investing/finance, History, Health, Travel, Sports, Horror, Humor, Memoir, Pop-culture.

Embracing the Possibilities

As Zac mentioned in his last post, I’ll be stepping in here at Promptly–and trying to suppress my envy!–while he’s out enjoying a much deserved vacation. I’ve heard some people say that it takes them several days to truly let go and transition into “vacation mode.” Not me. My favorite feeling on vacation is...

They’re Called GOOGLE ALERTS, and Yes We Have Them

If you've never heard of Google Alerts, they're just about the best thing ever. You tell Google a word or phrase, and Google will alert you daily when that phrase is used on the Internet. For example, whenever someone writes the words "Chuck Sambuchino" on a page or blog, Google will tell...

3 Sure-Fire Ways to Insult Someone in Publishing

1. Design your own book cover, or better yet, have a loved one do so for you. Bonus points if that loved one is a child (either young of full-grown), and creates abstract art. 1.5. Draw your own illustrations or have a loved one do so because they’re really good with Microsoft Paint. Books...

Writing Advice from Readers (and some talk about Cheever)

  We are half way through the week. You would think that the week would feel shorter because of the holiday on Monday, but I think that day just threw me off… It’s been a long few days—illness, a wake, lots of work. Tonight is my Literature Seminar. We’re discussing The Stories of John...

Winners Announced: The 'Worst Storyline Ever' Contest

Thanks to all who entered the second-ever “Worst Storyline Contest” here on the GLA blog.  We got tons of entries!  The judging is over and the winning lines are below (as well as some commentary from me).  Special thanks to several WD and WD Books staffers who weighed in on the judging, and congrats...

CREATING POTENT VILLAINS – David's Pitch Workshop

Hey, folks– A few weeks ago, loyal reader David submitted to the Pitch Workshop a synopsis for his hacker thriller, Hacktivism.  So first of all, thanks to David for submitting… and thanks to all of you who responded with comments and constructive criticism. For those of you missed it, here’s the synopsis, followed by...

Agent Advice: Michelle Humphrey of Sterling Lord Literistic

This installment features Michelle Humphrey of ICM. As an assistant for the Renee Zuckerbrot Agency and then Anderson Literary, she's worked with such authors as Kelly Link, Amy Ryan, Barry Lyga, and Helen Benedict. Prior to agencies, her gigs have included English Teacher, Proofreader, and Freelance Book Reviewer; her reviews have been published in...

Remove These Phrases From Your Writing Life

I’m on an inspirational kick this week. I recently connected on LinkedIn with my very first boss at F+W. I always remember the advice he repeated to me that went something like: “Imagine you’re 80, looking back on the fulfilling, beautiful life you’ve led. Now go do that.” I come across too many people...

What to Remember at Every Writing Conference

Writing conferences: They make us feel good because we’re taking proactive, positive steps toward our writerly goals, rather than sitting in front of the TV with a laptop and The Simpsons. Thing is, once we get to the conference, we’re constantly analyzing: Do we stack up to this writer or that budding poet? Do...

A Look at Revision

  Revision is tough. But you hear it all the time: writing is revising. And I know this is true. Some people love rewriting, writer Bernard Malamud called revising “one of the exquisite pleasures of writing.” And then there is the rest of us (some of you may love it, too?). It’s not that...

Can You Copyright a Title?

Q: I’ve been working on a book and the title is very important—I use it as the URL for my blog, for a weekly column I write, etc., and I want people to identify it with me. Can I copyright a title so others can’t use it? –Anonymous A: Copyrights cover works fixed in...

It's Not Business As Usual–Stop Acting Like It

In my role at Writer’s Digest I balance two key objectives that’s an odd, meta-publishing endeavor: Help aspiring writers succeed in the publishing arena Keep the Writer’s Digest business—as a publishing and/or content business—viable Because of my position within the publishing industry, I see up-close the effects of hard economic times, transformational technology, and...

Cold Querying Still Works

This post on the PubRants blog was way too amazing not to mention.  Guest blogger Megan Crewe, writing on agent Kristin Nelson’s site, explains how she polled 270 successful fiction authors and asked them if they broke in with a referral (a personal connection with someone in the business) or whether they cold queried...

Marketing Vs. Story: Which is King? (Plus, Craft the Ultimate Cliche)

Marketing, marketing, marketing. You hear it from writing books. You hear it from us. You hear it from conferences, published writers at readings and even unpublished writers hanging out on street corners. Sure, it’s important—if not crucial at times—but what should really take precedence when it gets down to the marrow of things? It’s...

New Agent Alert: Myrsini Stephanides of the Carol Mann Agency

Reminder: Newer agents are golden opportunities for new writers because they’re likely building their client list; however, always make sure your work is as perfect as it can be before submitting, and only query agencies that are a great fit for your work. Otherwise, you’re just wasting time and postage. She is seeking: Nonfiction: pop...

How I Got My Agent: Mary DeMuth

"How I Got My Agent" is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at...