Interviews

Sherman Alexie’s Top 10 Pieces of Advice for Writers

National Book Award winner Sherman Alexie’s birthday is Sunday, and his new title Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories was released this week. To celebrate the short-story writer (War Dances), poet (The Business of Fancydancing) and novelist (The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian), here’s some advice Alexie shared with us in...

Happy Birthday, Stephen King!

Today is Stephen King’s 65th birthday. To honor the man who is perhaps the most well-known living writer, here’s a linkfest of all things King. Don’t forget to have an It cupcake or two today. Stephen King’s Best Quotes: 13 of the author’s classic quips on the craft of writing. An Interview With...

Can Your Day Job Lead to Better Writing?

For some writers, a day job is a means to an end—and something they dream of one day quitting to pursue a dream of writing full time. (So much so that here at WD, we get the “When do you think I should quit?” question from our readers all the time....

Top 10 Essentials to a Writer’s Life

This week, I finished Erik Larson’s latest narrative nonfiction, In the Garden of Beasts, which is still dominating The New York Times bestseller list. Excellent read. A few years back, I got in touch with Larson (who also wrote the spectacular Devil in the White City) to see if he would...

Remembering Gore Vidal: 10 Quotes on Writing

The legendary Gore Vidal died yesterday at age 86. Here, we remember him with some stirring quotes from an interview we printed in 1975, showcasing him at his most “prolific, elegant and acerbic” (as The New York Times aptly described him earlier today). Rest in peace, Gore. * “You can improve...

How to Control a Media Interview

By Rob Eagar A good way to gauge your interview prowess is by mastering the ability to steer a conversation to only the topics that you want to discuss. Just because a radio or TV host asks you a question does NOT mean that you must answer it. Sure, it’s polite...

Make Your Writing Time Matter

Who hasn’t daydreamed about what we could produce if only we had more time? More time to write; more time to feel inspired; more time to read; more time to devote to all those things-besides-writing that writers these days are expected to do (platform building, anyone?). There’s no question that time...

How to Break the Rules of Writing

Here at Writer’s Digest (and despite the There Are No Rules moniker of this blog), we talk a lot about doing things by the book—from understanding grammatical and structural writing rules, to following submission guidelines, to otherwise conducting yourself like a pro. And that’s why we had so much fun putting...

Interview With Expert Freelancer Kelly James-Enger

Today I’m talking with author and freelancing expert Kelly James-Enger, whose work has appeared in dozens of national magazines, including Redbook, Fitness and Self. James-Enger says that her success as a full-time freelancer isn’t the result of persistence or luck, but of learning the “secrets” of freelancing. You can find all...

Writing Advice From Famous Irish Authors

In anticipation of St. Patrick’s Day, I thought it might be fun to tap into the wit and wisdom of a few famous Irish and Anglo-Irish writers. While March 17 seems like a logical time to celebrate all things Irish, Ireland’s contributions to literature are worth noting anytime. From the Middle...

13 Stephen King Quotes on Writing: Your Moment of Friday Zen

Every week, I spelunk into the Writer’s Digest archives to find the wisest, funniest, or downright strangest moments from our 92 years of publication. Today: An array of quotes from Stephen King, author of, err, well, mostly everything, from The Shining and Carrie to On Writing, The Dark Tower series and The Stand. I...

When It Comes to Getting Published, There’s No Shortage of New Ideas

Today I’m talking with Jesse Potash, the founder of PUBSLUSH (www.pubslush.com), which presents a unique new model for getting published. Because it’s so unusual – and because they’re a non-profit – I thought you might find it of interest. Jesse was a panelist at last month’s Writer’s Digest Conference. Here’s the...

How to Find Your Narrative Voice

A strong narrative voice gives your fiction a distinctive flavor and makes it stand out in a slush pile. But many beginning novelists struggle with finding their narrative voice, and some opt out altogether by emulating another writer’s voice. That’s unfortunate, since an original voice always makes other storytelling elements —including...

21 Ray Bradbury Quotes: Your Moment of Friday Writing Zen

Every week, I spelunk into the Writer’s Digest archives to find the wisest, funniest, or downright strangest moments from our 92 years of publication. Today: An array of quotes from the brilliant mind of Ray Bradbury, author of Farenheit 451, Zen in the Art of Writing, and many other books. (Also,...

5 Factors to Help You Evaluate Blogs & Online Authorities

    Today, over at Courage 2 Create, I’m the featured interviewee. I discuss online authority, and how to decide which people and organizations you should trust. Here’s a small snippet: Authority comes in a variety of forms, and we each have different values that can lead us to disagree on...

How to Build Your Website Without Knowing Code

Today I sent out the latest issue of my e-mail newsletter, which I call “3 Happy Things.” Each issue has a different theme, and this one focused on how to build a website for free, without knowing code, in less than an hour. Click here to view the newsletter on codeless...

Ask the Agent: Kelly Mortimer

In the March/April 2011 issue of Writer’s Digest, you’ll find Kelly Mortimer featured in my Ask the Agent column. Kelly went above and beyond the call of duty in answering my questions, and I felt bad that I had to cut most of what she had to say. So I promised...

My Thoughts on Drinking + Life + Writing

This week, I’m the featured interview over at Drinking Diaries, a site devoted to women’s experiences with alcohol. I had 2 thoughts when I was invited to participate: Oh, fun!!! Oh no. The stereotype of the alcoholic writer always makes me a little self-conscious when I talk about drinking, or liking...

Future of Publishing Round Up

Okay, this is the last dedicated round-up (at least for a while) on the future of publishing! My interview with Writer Unboxed on the future of publishing My interview with The Writer Mama on the future of publishing Virtual Davis summarizes Web response to my thoughts on the future of publishing...

My Latest Thoughts on Writers & Social Media

While at AWP, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Caleb J. Ross and Nik Korpon to talk about writers, social media, and the digital era.You can listen to the 20-minute conversation here. Some topics we discuss: How is it writers are so attached to the physical book? Is aversion...

An E-Publisher That Specializes in Original Short Works

The digitization of publishing has spawned many new presses and publishing models, and one of them is 40K Books. 40K takes advantage of the e-book format by specializing in novelettes and focused original essays. Based in Milan, Italy, they handle world rights, translating and selling their e-books in different languages (English,...

How to Find a Direct Line to Your Readers

On tap today we have a Q&A with author and independent publisher Patricia V. Davis, who will be a featured speaker at the Writer’s Digest Conference in NYC. I first met Patricia at a Writer’s Digest event, before her first book was released. Since then, her publishing career has steadily grown,...