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Brian Klems’ The Writer’s Dig

Brian A. Klems is a published author and the online editor of WritersDigest.com. His blog, which covers everything writing—from grammar rules to publishing—is one of the most popular in the writing community. Follow him on Twitter @BrianKlems.

The 12 Steps of Queryers Anonymous

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BY AYA DE LEON Querying have you down? Know that you’re not alone. Follow these steps to help you get through the emotionally exciting (yet tough) process of querying agents. Read more

Reading Selection of the Month: The Hollow Girl by Reed Farrel Coleman

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Tyrus Books, a member of the Writer’s Digest publishing family, announced the launch of The Hollow Girl—the final book in its popular Moe Prager series, written by Reed Farrel Coleman. If you’re … Read more

5 Tips for Hitting Bestsellers Lists

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BY GRETCHEN CRARY As a book publicist, one of the very first questions I’m usually asked is, “Can you help make my book into a bestseller?” While there is no tried and true way, what I can tell you about are some of the secret tips that the big publishers use to give their books the best chance to hit those sought after lists. Read more

Live Chat with Thriller Writer David Morrell, June 5, 2014

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Booktrib is hosting a live chat with high action thriller writer David Morrell, author of First Blood (the award-winning thriller where Rambo was created) on June 4, 2014, at 4 p.m. Eastern time. The event is sponsored by Writer’s Digest. You’re welcome to submit questions ahead of time here or just join the chat on Wednesday and ask then. Read more

How Long Until You Can Follow Up on Query Letters?

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Q: I e-mailed a query to a magazine editor three weeks ago and haven’t heard from him. The writer’s guidelines state, “Don’t call us; we’ll call you if we want to use … Read more

Should You Write for Yourself or for the Reader?

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BY KIP LANGELLO Here’s why you should be crafting your book with one specific reader in mind—and that reader isn’t who you think it is. Read more

Help WD Choose Our Next Annotated Classic: Will it be Huck Finn? Sherlock Holmes? You Tell Us.

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Right now, we need help picking the next classic to annotate. Here’s how you can help. Read more

Funny You Should Ask – Agents, Rough Drafts and More

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Agent Barbara Poelle tackles reader questions giving thoughtful (and funny) answers. Read more

The 7 Tools of Dialogue

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My neighbor John loves to work on his hot rod. He’s an automotive whiz and tells me he can hear when something is not quite right with the engine. He doesn’t hesitate … Read more

The 5 Essential Story Ingredients

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Forget three-act structures, formulas for plot, and even beginnings, middles and ends. Write better stories by propelling your protagonist through a transformation your readers will never forget. Read more

The 5 C’s of Writing a Great Thriller Novel

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BY JAMES SCOTT BELL Boost your story’s immunity to reader scrutiny with these fortifying nutrients.
Read more

WD Editors Are Writers Too: Meet Adrienne Crezo, Managing Editor of Writer’s Digest

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All the editors on Writer’s Digest staff aren’t just 9-5 editors, we are also writers and storytellers—which is why we are so passionate about writing and publishing. “WD Editors Are Writers Too” is a column on this blog to give you a sneak peek at the folks who lead the WD community—including their quirks, what inspires them and what they are writing outside of the Writer’s Digest world. Today’s pick is Writer’s Digest Managing Editor Adrienne Crezo, who is the newest member of the WD team. (Hopefully she knows that the newest member sponsors Donut Fridays.) Read more

Is It My Writing or Is It My Editor?

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BY JIM DEMPSEY An explanation of the corrections an editor can make to a manuscript, and how editors and authors can work together to make a great novel even better. Read more

3 Writing Tips from Brat-Pack Star-Turned-Writer Andrew McCarthy

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BY KERRIE FLANAGAN The former Brat-Pack actor and director followed his passion into a new career: award-winning travel writer. Here, he shares his best tips. Read more

Are Subjects Joined by “And” Singular or Plural? – Grammar Rules

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If you’re uncertain whether subjects joined by and should be singular or plural, you’ve come to the right place. The simple answer is here. Read more

The Pros and Cons of Publishing With a Small Publisher

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BY ROBERT LEE BREWER So what are the pros and cons of publishing with a small press, and what should you expect if you decide to give it a go? Read more

What Magazine Editors Want (& Don’t Want)

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What are editors’ pet peeves? What can you do to get more and more assignments tossed your way by editors? Do editors expect you to know SEO? (Do you know what SEO means?) I was honored to be interviewed by Laura Pepper Wu, editor of The Write Life magazine, where we discussed many important topics that relate to freelance writers. It’s a lot of great info packed into a relatively short conversation, so it’s worth checking out (not to mention I look incredibly dashing in my bright blue headphones). Here’s the clip. Read more

How to Write a Mashup Novel

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BY PAUL CICCHINI Mashups seem to be one of the hip, ‘in vogue’ things these days, although in actuality the idea is not new at all. For the uninitiated, a ‘mashup’ novel is … Read more

5 Tips for Writing Historical Fiction

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BY VICTORIA PATTERSON The Peerless Four, based on the historical precedent of the first women allowed to compete in the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics in track and field on a trial basis, was a departure from my previous story collection and novel, Drift and This Vacant Paradise, both set at the end of the 20th century in my fictionalized home-turf of Newport Beach, California. This is what I learned about writing historical fiction. Read more

Winners of our 2014 #AprilFools4Writers Contest

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Thanks to everyone who participated in our #AprilFools4Writers content. If you missed it, here are the details. There were tons of hilarious and clever entries this year and I enjoyed reading through all of them. More than 400 people participated, which is amazing! Anyway, without further ado here are the winners (chosen at random, as promised). Read more

Do You Have What Publishers Really Want?

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BY NINA AMIR If you are a writer who dreams of landing a traditional publishing deal, you might have a nagging question in your mind. It’s probably phrased something like, “Is my book idea what a publisher wants?” In fact, a better question to ask yourself is, “Do I have what publishers really want?” What publishers seek in an aspiring author doesn’t only involve your book idea or even your writing. These are a big part of what they consider in their decision making process, but they are not the only things. Read more

8 Strategies to Build Your Freelance Writing Career

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BY ROGER MORRIS Use these 8 strategies to turn occasional assignments into steady paychecks. Read more

It’s Our 4th Annual “April Fools’ Headlines for Writers” Contest – Join in & Win Prizes!

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Are you ready to have a little fun? It’s April Fools Day, which means it’s time for my annual #AprilFools4Writers contest! Here’s how it works: Create entertaining, clever and witty headlines that would appear in an Onion-style newspaper for writers about anything writing related (grammar, authors, books, etc.) and post it in any of the ways mentioned below. That’s it! That’s all you have to do. To make it extra special, I’ll up the ante: I’m giving away two prizes, The Build an Author Platform Premium Collection and a copy of the 2014 Writer’s Market Deluxe Edition. Here’s how to win one of them. Read more

9 Steps to an Effective Virtual Book Tour

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BY DANA SITAR You can easily waste a lot of effort producing guest posts for little gain if you don’t have a solid plan. Follow these steps to ensure you get the most out of every guest post appearance. Read more

Copywriting: A Crash Course for Writers Looking to Break In

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BY ATHENA SCHULTZ The market for freelance copywriting is bigger than ever—and so is the potential to break in. Put your writing skills to work on the side, and you might just hit the jackpot. Read more

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