When I work on a project—with clients, but particularly with my own writing—I start by acknowledging a blunt but important truth: Nobody cares about what I have made.
Social media is just one component of your author platform, and not necessarily the most important component. It works best as part of a holistic book marketing and promotion strategy.
Pitching agents at a writers conference can be a difficult task for the new writer. Here’s how to make it a little easier on yourself.
If you need to request permissions from an author or publisher, here are general guidelines, plus a sample letter you can customize.
Tapas, a new digital publishing platform, has led to meaningful earnings and readership for independent artists and writers in less than two months.
Screenwriter and novelist Nina R. Sadowsky shares screenwriting techniques that have influenced her novel writing, and writers can learn from the screen.
Are you getting the most from professional feedback, or are you inadvertently sabotaging your progress? Look for these patterns in your response.
This is an introductory guide to the major self-publishing options available to authors today, and how to choose the right service for you.
I’m offering a month-long master class in author platform in August 2017, in collaboration with Writer House in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Here’s a word I have eliminated as fully as possible from my information and advice lexicon for writers: passion.
Permissions is all about seeking permission to quote or excerpt other people’s copyrighted work within your own. Here’s when you need to seek permissions.
Today, our problem is not finding more great things to read. It’s finding time to read the great many wonderful things that are published.
The two biggest mistakes in book publicity pitches: they are too long in length, and not pointed or provocative enough.
A “clueless ask” is when a well-meaning stranger asks for an investment of a successful person’s time and energy. What are such people owed, if anything?
You should consider how secret you want to be about your true identity. Maintaining secrecy is difficult. The higher the level of secrecy, the more complicated the process
If you want to publish your book, here are the steps you should follow to assess your work’s potential, then research and pitch editors and agents.
In my many years of critiquing queries, I see the same weaknesses again and again. Here are the biggest issues that afflict novel queries and how you can fix them.
If there’s something at the heart of the story that still interests you, that keeps pulling you back, that still haunts you years later, then that’s probably a sign that there’s something worth struggling for there.
When submitting your short form literature to a magazine or journal, your cover letter is often the first impression an editor sees. It serves as an introduction to your thoughtfully crafted art. As such, it is significant, but it shouldn’t be intimidating or even take much of your time to write.
Everyone has a meaningful story to tell, but not everyone’s story (or writing) is going to deserve a commercial publishing deal. Here are the most common problems I encounter in memoir pitches and manuscripts.
Primarily an indie published author, Aleatha Romig participates in Kindle Worlds, which allows other authors to write about the characters in her work.
Writing a nonfiction book proposal—a good one—requires not only sharp clarity about your idea, but also how that idea, in book form, is relevant and unique in today’s market. You’ll have a much easier time writing your proposal if you take time to conduct market research beforehand.
Marketing FOMO is more debilitating than distracting—and if you suffer from marketing FOMO, your marketing tasks will never be done.
How do agents—generally considered the gatekeepers to publishing companies—approach the issue of diversity in the publishing industry?
Everything you need to know to start writing a book proposal for your nonfiction book.
Whenever you produce titles fast, you’re making trade-offs.
Here are the latest stories that are causing confusion (and sometimes moral panic) where it’s not deserved.
Some agents and editors say that personalizing a query letter can backfire. Others say the opposite—that it’s mandatory. What should you do?
Every writer’s pet fear stems from the mother of all fears: What other people think of what I write is more important than what I think of what I write.
A detailed look at how NetGalley’s Stuart Evers and Myfanwy Collins went from manuscript to publication, with marketing and PR advice.
How to Spot Toxic Feedback: 7 Signs That the Writing Advice You’re Getting May Do More Harm Than Good
If you recognize the following characteristics in the critiques of your work, it may not just be inept—it may, in fact, be toxic.
Is a book’s success all luck, even if ‘luck’ includes hitting the right subject matter at the right time, or is it marketing—and can an indie author in any way compete with a publisher?
Turns out there is only one universal rule of plot, and it goes back to what Joseph Campbell uncovered: every single story worth telling is about transformation via trials.
Writer Katherine Vaz discusses an assignment that is given to every student at her university: to write about “the most important thing ever to happen to me.”
Authors need help with digital book marketing—the kind of help that traditional publishers rarely provide. Co-ops and collectives can help fill that gap.
When you’re wooing the media, what you’re really trying to do is to intrigue them. To whet their appetites. Sometimes the best way to do that flows from remembering that less is often more.
As writers, we don’t always know how much of ourselves to share with the public. But it behooves us to create and curate an author persona—the public face for our work.
Half of writers are plotters, and the other half are pantsers. One is not the right way or the wrong way; there is only the way that works best for you.
Every author, regardless of when or what they’ve published, has an Author Central page. But many authors have not claimed theirs—which is a big mistake.
How do great authors develop stunning narratives, break from tradition, and advance the form of their fiction? They take whatever basic ideas they’ve got, then move them away from the typical.
I’m delighted to announce that I’ve been working with The Authors Guild on the creation and release of their new resource guide on e-publishing.
Learn the difference between all ready/already, altogether/all together, all right/alright, any time/anytime, anyway/any way.
If you dream of a full-time freelance writing career, don’t be discouraged by the largely negative messages about how difficult it is out there.
By far the most common entry-level mistake in the writing game, the thing that can get a perfectly good story rejected by an editor on the first page, is overwriting.
Memoir, as William Dean Howells said, is the “most democratic province of the republic of letters.” Indeed, the genre is evidence that every person in the world has a worthy story to tell, that it’s not what the story is but how it’s told that engages a reader.
No pressure, but the opening of your book is the gatekeeper in determining whether your novel will sell. If your opening is weak, it won’t matter if chapter two is a masterpiece. Editors and agents and booksellers and librarians and readers will stop reading before they get there.
We order; we catalogue. It is, simply, what the human mind excels at.
Misconceptions about getting started often hold new writers back. You may think that to be successful as a freelance writer, you need a J-school degree, an impressive database of editorial contacts, and a truckload of supplies. Not so—read on to learn the most common myths that can sabotage you before you start.
You need to write a memoir—except the mere thought floods you with anxiety. You’ve got decades of memories; where would you even start? Lists to the rescue!
If fiction writing is something you’d like to pursue in your retirement years, follow these steps to help you prepare for the business of authorship.