November/December 2013 Issue
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Unleash your writing potential now with Writer’s Digest writing articles. Here, you can learn everything you need to know about virtually any writing topic and genre. Whether it’s fiction writing, how to write an article, getting published, promoting your work and much, much more. Learn from published authors and industry experts alike how to take your initial ideas and turn them into a completed story that is creative and print-worthy – from the Writer’s Digest writing articles.
Having just graduated from my MFA program and produced a book-length work of fiction, I should be feeling awesome. I should be feeling satisfied that I actually completed something that my father … Read more
Composing a good query letter is vital to getting an agent hooked on a self-published book. The following letter was written by Suzanne Hansen for her self-published book You’ll Never Nanny in … Read more
Between subsidy publishers, vanity presses and print-on-demand companies, plenty of avenues exist for writers to see their work published outside of the traditional route. While writers argue over the pros and cons … Read more
I have a question, and my guess is you’ll know the answer. Who was the first person to fly solo across the Atlantic? If you said Charles Lindbergh, then step to the … Read more
People often confuse the mystery and thriller genres. While it’s true that they often overlap, there’s a distinct difference: A mystery follows an intellectual protagonist who puts together clues to solve a … Read more
At the Maui Writers Conference, bestselling thriller writer Steve Berry says there are eight key rules that all writers must know and follow: 1. There are no rules. You can do anything … Read more
Glimmer Train just announced the winners of their June Fiction Open competition. All winners will be published in an upcoming issue of Glimmer Train Stories. First place ($2,000) Shimon Tanaka (San … Read more
When Isabel Allende published her first book in 1982—The House of the Spirits, a novel loosely based on her clairvoyant grandmother and the political unrest of her embattled home country, Chile—she never … Read more
Bestselling crime novelist George Pelecanos took the axiom “write what you know” to heart in the early days of his career. A Firing Offense, the first of his 15 published novels, stars … Read more
Here it is: the list. As in years past, Writer’s Digest has assembled a list of literary agents who are building their client rosters and are open to working with new writers. … Read more
1. If you write across categories (let’s say you write both picture books and adult fantasy), look for an agent who handles everything you write. She might just be your perfect fit. … Read more
Some years ago the fine short story writer Raymond Carver offered recollections about learning to write from teacher and novelist John Gardner. “I remember him as being very patient,” Carver wrote in … Read more
The opening of a short story or novel is just that—the very beginning. That’s the simple and straightforward definition. However, what this book is really concerned with is illustrating the differences between … Read more
An aspiring novelist was talking to me recently about his quest to get published. "Once I get an agent, I’ll be happy," he said confidently. I laughed in his face. Having toiled … Read more
Happiness isn’t a new concept—Aristotle wrote about the topic more than 2,300 years ago and Thomas Jefferson included the "pursuit of happiness" as an unalienable right in the Declaration of Independence—but authors … Read more
In December 2006, snowed in during a Colorado vacation, author Lauren Baratz-Logsted gave birth to a surprise set of octuplets with the help of her husband and 7-year-old daughter. But these weren’t … Read more
BETH FEHLBAUM • WRITES FROM: Piney Woods, Texas • DEBUT BOOK: Courage in Patience (Kunati Books) “Courage in Patience is the story of 14-year-old Ashley Asher, who has been abused by her … Read more
Best known for editing such works as Sue Monk Kidd’s The Secret Life of Bees, Helen Fielding’s Bridget Jones’s Diary and Lauren Groff’s The Monsters of Templeton, Pamela Dorman is one of … Read more
1. Don’t edit. You’re shooting for something more ambitious than pretty sentences: an entire first draft of a book, in all its imperfect glory. You have to embrace November as an experiment … Read more
Your novel is finished. If you’re like most writers, you put months, maybe years, into writing it and then you proofread it through the envelope on the way to the post office. … Read more
You’ve probably seen articles that tell you which words and phrases to avoid at restaurants if you want to stay healthy—words like “crispy,” “golden fried” and “closed by the Board of Health.” … Read more
Humiliation. Anger. Depression. All three emotions gripped me the day I discovered that a local politician had referred to me, in a letter to the editor, as a “greener-than-thou guttersnipe.” Never mind … Read more
Amy Bloom has a wry, cynical wit that she exercises in her smoky maple syrup voice on any subject, from how her psychotherapy practice informs her writing—“I don’t know how it would, … Read more
John Warner, Chief Creative Czar of TOW Books, a publishing imprint dedicated to producing “funny books for people with good senses of humor,” unveiled the struggling imprint’s latest initiative that Warner promised … Read more
Think you’re funny? How often have you sat through “The Daily Show,” thinking, I could do that! Well, writing comedy isn’t for the weak, particularly as the TV networks continue to whittle … Read more