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Writer's Digest September/October 2022 Cover Reveal

Writer's Digest is excited to announce our Sept/Oct 2022 issue featuring our Annual Literary Agent Roundup, an interview with NYT-bestselling YA horror novelist Tiffany D. Jackson, and articles about writing sinister stories.

As the nights start to get longer, the leaves start changing colors, and Halloween decorations start making their appearance, writers start turning to the darker, more haunting themes in their work. And so does Writer’s Digest in the September/October issue, themed around Sinister Stories. It covers everything from writing evil characters to writing horror microfiction to how to avoid scams that would turn one’s publishing life into a horror story.

Writer's Digest September/October 2022 Cover

Features include:

+ The 2022 Annual Agent Roundup: In this ever-popular feature, WD has done the work to find 20+ of the most sought-after and respected literary agents in the business who are currently open to receiving queries in a wide range of forms and genres. By Amy Jones

+ Avoiding Publishing Scams: Scams in the publishing world about, from schmagents to companies taking advantage of self-publishing authors to competitions that are just money grabs. This article shares tips and tricks (from a publishing legal professional) of what to look out for so yours doesn’t become the next publishing horror story. By Amy Cook

[Buy this issue on newsstands starting August 23, 2022 or subscribe to Writer's Digest today and never miss an issue!]

+ Bite-Sized Scares: Writing MicroHorror: Horror stories don’t have to be long to create a solid scare. Ran Walker, author of multiple microfiction collections, offers nine tips for writing sinister microfiction. By Ran Walker

+ It’s Not Me, It’s You: Avoiding Guilt by Association: When writers create unlikeable or truly evil characters, they unfairly run the risk of guilt by association. Jeff Somers offers advice for ensuring readers separate you from your fictional characters. By Jeff Somers

+ The WD Interview: Tiffany D. Jackson: The New York Times-bestselling YA author discusses how her background in media influences her novel construction and why horror is an important genre for teens upon the release of her newest novel, The Weight of Blood. By Moriah Richard

+ Announcing the Winners of the WD Short Short Story Competition: Emmett Knowlton, the first-place winner of the 22nd Annual Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Awards shares a coming-of-age story with a twist, plus a brief Q&A, and we announce the top 10 finalists. By Moriah Richard

Also Included:

+ Bonus Interview with Ursula Vernon (aka T. Kingfisher): Novelist and artist Ursula Vernon, (also known as T. Kingfisher), shares the impetus for her two author personas, her approach for writing for children, and what writing an 800-page webcomic taught her about process. By Don Vaughan

+ Writers on Writing with Alex R. Kahler (aka K.R. Alexander): Middle-grade and young adult author Alex R. Kahler considers how he took the unlikely route of writing horror books for children, and what authors of that genre need to consider when writing scary stories for young people. By Alex R. Kahler

Plus, all of your favorite columns: an expanded IndieLab section with our second Indie Author Profile, Meet the Agent, Funny You Should Ask, Publishing Insights, All About the Pitch, Level Up Your Writing (Life), Building Better Worlds, Conference Scene, and For All Ages about writing children’s, middle-grade, and young adult books. 

[Download a digital copy of this issue from the Writer's Digest shop today.]

Short Short Story Competition early bird 2022

Get inspired by reading the winning story of the 22nd Annual Writer's Digest Short Short Story competition in this issue, then enter your own story in the 23rd Annual Writer's Digest Short Short Story Competition!

Writer’s Digest Official Book Club Selection: The Weight of Blood

Writer’s Digest Official Book Club Selection: The Weight of Blood

The editors of Writer’s Digest are proud to announce the next book club selection, The Weight of Blood, by New York Times bestselling author Tiffany D. Jackson.

5 Tips for Writing a Medical Thriller

5 Tips for Writing a Medical Thriller

There are endless opportunities to build tension in medical thrillers. Here, Dr. Cristina LePort 5 tips for writing a medical thriller from the medical jargon to tying up loose ends.

Good Samaritan or Bystander?

Good Samaritan or Simply Bystander?

Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, your character witnesses something bad happening—will they intervene?

Lygia Day Peñaflor: On Writing Unconventional Villains

Lygia Day Peñaflor: On Writing Unconventional Villains

Author Lygia Day Peñaflor discusses the high school experience that inspired her new YA psychological drama, Creep: A Love Story.

Writing Doesn't Have to Be Lonely: 5 Benefits of Joining a Writing Organization

Writing Doesn't Have to Be Lonely: 5 Benefits of Joining a Writing Organization

Author and Sisters in Crime Vice President Jennifer J. Chow reflects on 35 years of the women's crime writer's organization and the five benefits of joining a writing organization—even if you're an introvert.

5 Tips for Forming Your Own Distinct Voice (and Why That’s Important)

5 Tips for Forming Your Own Distinct Voice (and Why That’s Important)

While emulating authors you love is a natural starting point, finding your own voice in storytelling is paramount to your success. Author Ronald Kelly shares 5 tips for forming your own writing voice.

From Script

Keeping the Emotion of the True Story (From Script)

In this week’s round up brought to us by Script magazine, Barri Evins offers writers invaluable pointers on navigating the pitfalls, as well as capturing the potential of the true story, peppered with lots of real-life examples.

Sarah Bonner: On a Rom-Com Becoming a Psychological Thriller

Sarah Bonner: On a Rom-Com Becoming a Psychological Thriller

Author Sarah Bonner discusses how she started her debut novel as short story before it became the psychological thriller, Her Perfect Twin.

Kerri Maniscalco: On Big Reveals in Fantasy Fiction

Kerri Maniscalco: On Big Reveals in Fantasy Fiction

New York Times bestselling author Kerri Maniscalco discusses the satisfaction in finishing a series with her new fantasy novel, Kingdom of the Feared.