It’s not enough to love our story ideas. We need to weigh their suitability as subjects for fiction, and then figure out how to go about making use of them. This means steering clear of cliché and its sappy cousin—melodrama. Here are 10 tips to help you do just that.
Let’s step once again into the role of the unconvinced, perhaps even curmudgeonly or fool-hearted editor: What harsh rejection letters might the authors of some of our favorite hits have had to endure? For this special edition of Reject a Hit, WD readers took our online challenge to rebuff Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet—in just...
Should your story be fictionalized or be a true telling of your life? You have to decide. Here are 10 factors to consider.
Do you have the SWEATS: Serious Writer Experiencing Anxiety and Timidity Syndrome? If so, you don’t need medication to cope with your ailment—all you need is a shot of Comedy Writing 101. Here is a 10-part breakdown of how to write better and avoid the SWEATS.
Alcoholism. A turbulent Hollywood marriage. Writer’s Block. For the author of The Artist’s Way, the path of the writer has never been a walk in the park.
Hilarious! Scary! Terrifyingly prolific! Meet middle-grade horror legend R.L. Stine.
10 top conference organizers reveal the 10 common pitfalls they most often see writers tumbling into—and how to avoid them.
Abandoned manuscripts, dwindling writing time, stubborn computers—sometimes your writing life can feel like it’s lost the plot. It’s time to recenter and refocus—and start 2012 off right.
If we let the fear of rejection prevent us from pitching or querying or submitting, we are ensuring that we’ll never realize our aspirations. But when we consciously work with fear, we can actually harness this energy source in ways that support our writing goals and enhance our writing experience. Here are 10 ways...
In his obituary to the year-long Domino Project, Seth Godin wrote that publishing companies and other traditional players that do not adapt to new modes of doing business will go extinct. Others have suggested the same.
Meanwhile, some authors like J.A. Konrath and David Gaughran have eschewed traditional relationships with publishers to create and distribute...
When agents ask for sample chapters, which chapters should you include? If your strongest chapters fall in the middle, is it OK if I send those? The answer is different for fiction and nonfiction.
If you’re the kind of writer who prefers being read and selling your work as opposed to being an unknown starving writer (who doesn’t?), here are 50 quick, simple ways to launch your platform into action and climb your way to success.
Once you’ve completed an outline, it’s time to put it to use and get to work on your first manuscript draft. Chances are, you'll face a lot of questions. Let us help you answer them.
5-Minute Memoir is exactly what it sounds like—a personal essay on some facet of the writing life, be it a narrative or a reflection, pensive, touching or hilarious. Enjoy this installment from Kathleen Cleberg.
Literary agent Adriana Dominguez is looking for manuscripts. Find out what kind, learn about the most common mistakes she sees in query letters and more.
Here, some of the most successful writers in recent (and not-so-recent) memory share their take on everything from how they get ideas (or go find them), to the best way to start a manuscript (or why the only important thing is that you start at all), to their most methodical writing habits (and quirkiest...
Use these 5 steps to transform any meal or day in the kitchen into a written experience that will leave readers hungry for more.
Battling writer’s block? Relax. Research suggests inspiration will find you.
You interviewed your sources for an article, wrote it up and turned it in. Done? Not yet. Often you need to provide backup info for the publication’s fact checkers, and requirements for doing so vary. With that in mind, here’s a checklist to keep even the toughest fact checkers happy—and to pave the way...
Let’s step once again into the role of the unconvinced, perhaps even curmudgeonly or fool-hearted editor: What harsh rejection letters might the authors of some of our favorite hit books have had to endure? This issue's contribution comes from Kristina Wojtaszek, who tackled Eric Carle's children's classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
The most essential part of revision is often the least discussed: the need to get in the mindset to effectively evaluate what you’ve written. These techniques will freshen your eye and sharpen your saw.
By Rob Eagar, author of Sell Your Book Like Wildfire (Spring 2012, Writer’s Digest Books) Recently, college football fans were treated to an amazing game as Michigan State upset highly-ranked Wisconsin on the last play of regulation. As time expired, Michigan State’s quarterback threw a last-ditch, 44-yard, “Hail Mary” pass that was bobbled by two players...
5-Minute Memoir is exactly what it sounds like—a personal essay on some facet of the writing life, be it a narrative or a reflection, pensive, touching or hilarious. Enjoy this installment from N.M. Kleby.
Plenty of acclaimed and successful writers began their careers working strange—and occasionally degrading—day jobs. But rather than being ground down by the work, many drew inspiration for stories and poems from even the dullest gigs. Here are 10 of the oddest odd jobs of famous authors—all of them reminders that creative fodder can be...
There are a lot of ways that writers parent their characters, but no matter how you do it the end result is the same—a story that just doesn’t work and ultimately won’t sell. Fortunately, it’s a habit you can break.