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    Writing Editor Blogs

    Guide to Literary Agents Blog
    by Chuck Sambuchino

    GLA Editor Chuck Sambuchino keeps track of all news related to literary agents and writing conferences on his blog. 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 Chuck’s 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


    Questions & Quandaries
    by Brian Klems

    Don’t know the difference between “who” and “whom”? Facing an ethical dilemma about accepting gifts from subjects? Let the informative (and humorous) columnist Brian A. Klems answer some of your most pressing grammatical, ethical, business and writing-related questions. Check out his advice and don’t hesitate to ask a question—your writing career will thank you. Read Brian’s Blog


    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


    Live Near Austin, TX? Come to the Agents & Editors Conference (June 21-23, 2013)

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    The annual Agents & Editors Conference put on by the Writers League of Texas is perhaps the premiere literary conference in Texas. I got the chance to teach there in 2008 and was invited back this year (June 21-23, 2013) to be the keynote speaker. So if you’re interested in attending a conference that is 1) located in a great city, and 2) teeming with literary agents looking for writers, then this event is a great one for you. Read more

    Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 222

    Have fun getting wordy in June!

    For this week’s prompt, write a child’s play poem. All of us were at one point children. Some of us may be lucky enough to still be children. Certainly, we all know … Read more

    7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Jon Steele

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    1. Know the last sentence before you write the first one. Everything I know about the writing craft, I learned from my twenty-four year career as a television news cameraman. I’d get dropped into some far flung corner of planet earth with a deadline looming over my head, and I’d look for two things straight away; a closing shot then an opening shot. Two shots that would frame and define the story I wanted to capture in the camera lens. Once I had those two shots, all I needed to do was fill in the middle bit. Of course filling in the “middle bit” in a manner that was true to the storytelling and worthy of the open and close was often a hard, and sometimes dangerous, slog.

    GIVEAWAY: Jon is excited to give away a free copy of his novel to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (UPDATE: Moscoboy won.) Read more

    How I Got My Agent: Amy Sue Nathan

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    “How I Got My Agent” (this installment featuring author Amy Sue Nathan) is a recurring feature on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog. These columns are great ways for you to learn how to get a literary agent. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. Author Amy Sue Nathan’s women fiction novel, THE GLASS WIVES, was released on May 7, 2013 from St. Martins. Read more

    New Literary Agent Alert: Berta Treitl of Grosvenor Literary Agency

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    She is seeking: “Berta is selectively building her nonfiction list in these areas: science and technology; current events, law and politics, biography, business and marketing; and art, design, cooking, health, and lifestyle.

    “In fiction, she’s interested in historical and high-quality mysteries. Berta focuses on projects that present a counterintuitive or fresh viewpoint and that feature unusual communities, travel and foreign locales, and female main characters.” Read more

    30 June Writing Assignments

    Have fun getting wordy in June!

    Recently, I’ve been sharing writing assignments on the Writer’s Digest twitter account (@WritersDigest) using the hashtag #writerassignments. Since it’s been fairly popular so far, I thought it might be good form to … Read more

    “How I Write a Picture Book” — Author Steve Light Explains His Process

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    The sketchbook is filled with pictures and possibilities of what the story can be. I leave it up to my Editor and Art Director to pick out the things that they think our audience will respond to. Then I start figuring out what is going to happen inside this wonderful 32-page picture book I get to create. Some writing will take place at this point but only of plot points or beats I want to hit in the story. Sometimes a line or a phrasing will appear. Read more

    Author Interview: Steve Duno, Author of LAST DOG ON THE HILL

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    This dog author interview is with veteran pet behaviorist and author Steve Duno, who has to date authored 19 books and scores of magazine and web articles. He has covered a wide variety of subject matter on both dogs and cats, including basic training, aggression, environmental enrichment, behavior modification, breed profiling, trick training, and pet health care. His list of recent books include The Amazing Dog Trick Kit Book (Chronicle, 2007), Last Dog On The Hill: The Extraordinary Life of Lou (St. Martin’s, 2010), and Be the Dog: Secrets of the Natural Dog Owner. Read more

    Last call! Writing Challenge: Write the Opening Sentence to a Story Based on This Photo

    To anyone not currently wandering the halls of Book Expo America in New York, loaded down with so many books you wish you’d brought a wheelbarrow (my favorite part of the event): … Read more

    7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Pamela Sherwood

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    1. Know when to let go. We’ve all heard about the hazards of sending your manuscript out too soon, before it’s properly polished, edited, etc. It’s also possible to let your fears paralyze you into not sending it out at all. When you start fiddling with your work just to fiddle with it, dithering over the placement of punctuation marks or what not, it’s time to move on to the next stage, find that agent or publisher you want to query, and hit that “SEND” button!

    GIVEAWAY: Pamela is excited to give away a free copy of her novel to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (UPDATE: KathyTrueman won.) Read more

    5 Easy Ways to Publicize and Promote Your Book

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    1. Email: Long Live the 20th Century! Nothing did more for my book than an email sent on the day of my book launch, which was October 2nd. On my publication day, I emailed every contact I had in my personal account, names and email addresses I’ve held onto over the last decade. In six hours, my book, for all of one hour, cracked Amazon’s Top 100 in Fiction, clocking in at #81. No, it isn’t a bestseller, but that was pretty exciting for a debut short story collection on a small press. I’m positive that the overwhelming support from all the people whose paths I’ve crossed in the last decade lead to this initial sales success. Even if many of us bemoan being overburdened with email, it’s still the most efficient and direct way to let people know about your book. I only sent one email (I don’t spam people) but it was more than enough to give my book a boost. Read more

    Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 221

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    Over the past weekend, I took Friday off work and “unplugged” myself from nearly all my electronics (except my phone, which I barely used) until Monday night. So four days and four … Read more

    David Carnoy: Read an Interview With the Author of KNIFE MUSIC and THE BIG EXIT

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    What were your 1-2 biggest learning experience(s) or surprise(s) throughout the publishing process?

    I was a little bit surprised by how publishers are dealing with e-book pricing. As an “unknown” author, it’s very difficult to sell e-books for over $9.99 (it’s hard even at $9.99). I know a lot about the e-book industry because I cover it as part of my day job. So I’ve been very vocal about offering affordable pricing for the digital versions of my books and to his credit, Peter Mayer, the founder of Overlook and former head of Penguin for many years, has listened to me… Read more

    What’s Your Excuse for Not Writing?

    One of the things I love most about working with writers is that so many of them are unflinchingly generous with their time, words and wisdom. So when I was recently approached … Read more

    Deborah Hauser: Poet Interview

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    Please join me in welcoming Deborah Hauser to the Poetic Asides blog. Deborah Hauser is the author of Ennui: From the Diagnostic and Statistical Field Guide of Feminine Disorders (Finishing Line Press, … Read more

    New Literary Agent Alert: Amy Tannenbaum of Jane Rotrosen Agency

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    About Amy: Amy Tannenbaum of the Jane Rotrosen Agency began her book publishing career with a brief stint at Harlequin before joining Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, where she worked for over eight years. During her time there edited a diverse list of non-fiction and fiction books, including recent New York Times bestsellers Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire, Love Unrehearsed by Tina Reber and Cyndi Lauper: A Memoir.

    She is seeking: new adult, romance, high quality commercial women’s fiction. Read more

    The Art of the Query — May 30 Webinar by Agent Michelle Brower (Comes With a Query Critique!)

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    It’s no secret that the query letter is a difficult monster to tame. Plenty of people say that writing a concise, compelling query is not much easier than writing the manuscript itself. Because a query is your all-important first contact with publishing professionals, and because literary agents read the most queries, we’ve secured agent Michelle Brower (Folio Literary) for our next webinar: “The Art of the Query: Winning an Agent From the Very First Page.” It happens at 1 p.m., EST, Thursday, May 30, 2013, and lasts 90 minutes. All attendees get their query critiqued by Michelle. She may even request more material if she loves your pitch. Read more

    My Adventures in Edmonton, Canada — at the Writing in 3D Conference

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    This past weekend, I got the exciting chance to speak in Edmonton, Canada at the Words in 3D Conference. The event — which had a turnout of more than 300 attendees (wow!) — was organized by the Get Publishing Communications Society, the Writers’ Guild of Alberta, and the Editors’ Association of Canada (Prairie Provinces Branch). The conference was wonderful and I got to meet a lot of great people. It was an unusual and unique chance to get so far north to teach (it got dark there at 10:20 p.m.), and I would recommend the event to any in Alberta or nearby in future years. Read more

    Writing Routines that Work

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    2. Write when you’re hot. Practice pays off, but if the daily grind really isn’t your thing, then follow your instincts. Write when you’re ready to pour whole chapters/stories/volumes out onto the page. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has spent his career considering the behaviors and thought processes of creative folks: writers, scientists, comedians, mountain climbers, visual artists, musicians, chess players. The common link? An emphasis on entering an “ecstatic state” while engaged in their chosen art form. With that in mind, while you’re on a hot streak, and can feel yourself engrossed in a project, go with it, and keep on going.

    GIVEAWAY: Ariel is excited to give away a free copy of her novel to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (UPDATE: j4london won.) Read more

    How I Got My Agent: Loretta Torossian

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    Back to Basics After a Lesson Learned. After this lost opportunity, I knew that if I was serious about getting published I had to develop my craft and polish my style. I also learned that it wasn’t easy to catch an editor’s eye. I needed an agent. My goal – the next time any professional sees my writing, it needs to be my absolute best work. I embarked on a journey through four online critique groups, many SCBWI conferences and workshops, online Writers Digest tutorials, this amazing GLA Blog, a Mediabistro advanced novel writing class, many books on writing, and in-person critique sessions with writer friends I met at conferences. Read more

    WD Poetic Form Challenge: Senryu

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    It’s been two months since our last poetic form challenge and the April PAD Challenge is over, so let’s get another one started. This time around, the challenge is to write senryu, … Read more

    Literary Agent Interview: Linda Epstein of Jennifer De Chiara Literary

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    Linda is seeking: Accessible literary fiction, upscale commercial fiction, vibrant narrative nonfiction, some fantasy, and compelling memoirs. She also accepts middle-grade and YA fiction. Her nonfiction areas include alternative health and parenting books, cookbooks, select memoirs, and the right spiritual/self-actualization book. She does not accept: Bodice-rippers or anything with dead, maimed, or kidnapped children; thrillers; horror; romance or traditional science fiction.. Read more

    Agent Katharine Sands Teaches “From Pitch to Page One: How to Get an Agent from the Get-Go” – New May 23 Webinar With Query Critique

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    Getting a literary agent is no easy feat. It requires crafting a query and pitch to get their attention — without making any “querial killer” mistakes that will get your submission rejected. Cutting through the slush is hard work. That’s why we’re lucky to have agent Katharine Sands (Sarah Jane Freymann Literary) to teach “From Pitch to Page One: How to Get an Agent from the Get-Go,” a new webinar on Thursday, May 23, 2013. The webinar starts at 1 p.m., EST, and lasts 90 minutes. Katharine is one of the most in-demand agents at writers conferences nationwide because of her teaching skill. (She authored the book Making the Perfect Pitch.) Read more

    Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 220

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    Sorry for the late prompt today. Was finishing up some edits on Writer’s Market all morning. For this week’s prompt, write a late poem. I know, I know–how original! But seriously, write … Read more

    How to Write a Novel: 7 Tips Everyone Can Use

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    2. Begin with character. Make her flawed and believable. Let her live and breathe and give her the freedom to surprise you and take the story in unexpected directions. If she’s not surprising you, you can bet she’ll seem flat to your readers. One exercise I always do when I’m getting to know a character is ask her to tell me her secrets. Sit down with a pen and paper and start with, “I never told anybody…” and go from there, writing in the voice of your character.

    GIVEAWAY: Jennifer is excited to give away a free copy of her latest novel to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (UPDATE: Karen Gough won.) Read more

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