how to write a novel synopsis

How to Write a Novel Synopsis

Learn how to craft a strong novel synopsis, while avoiding the most common mistakes, including the dreaded "synopsis speak."
The Complete Guide to Query Letters

The Complete Guide to Query Letters

The query letter has one purpose, and one purpose only: to seduce the agent or editor into reading or requesting your work. The query letter is so much of a sales piece that it's quite possible to write one without having written a word of the manuscript. All it requires is a firm grasp of your story premise.
pitching agents at writers conferences

How to Pitch Agents at a Writers Conference

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.
How to Get Your Book Published

Start Here: How to Get Your Book Published

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.
Book Proposal Business Plan

Start Here: How to Write a Book Proposal

Everything you need to know to start writing a book proposal for your nonfiction book.
Kindle Press

How Kindle Press Made My Novel a Bestseller

In 2015, Kindle Press published about 90 novels. By the end of 2016, it had published a total of 218 books—all chosen through the Kindle Scout program.
agents or editors

Should You Submit Your Work to Agents or Editors?

Is it better to look for a literary agent first, or to approach editors and publishers? Much depends on the commercial potential of your work.
author platform building

Building a Platform to Land a Book Deal: Why It Often Fails

If you're preparing to pitch your nonfiction work to agents or publishers, you may have heard about the necessity of platform. What if you don't have one?
traditional publishing

Traditional Publishing: What’s It Good For?

No one used to question the value of a publisher, but now everyone's wondering: What are they good for?
taxes for authors

Do Men Receive Bigger Book Advances Than Women?

Do males or females receive higher advances? I look at Publishers Marketplace deals data to find out.
literary fiction

Is Self-Publishing a Viable Option for Literary Fiction Writers?

Should literary writers consider self-publishing? How it might affect their long-term careers? Two agents weigh in.
Harry Bingham between houses

Why Authors Walk Away From Good, Big 5 Publishers

UK author Harry Bingham describes the four stages of his career, and why he's decided to self-publish after good experiences with traditional houses.
How to Tell If Your Story Idea Is Mediocre—And How to Improve It

How to Tell If Your Story Idea Is Mediocre—And How to Improve It

Note from Jane: Today's guest post is adapted from The Writer's Advantage: A Toolkit for Mastering Your Genre by Laurie
New Year's Restitutions | Writing on the Ether

New Year’s Restitutions | Writing on the Ether

Table of Contents Nobody Dast Blame Us Maass Production Wendigging It Nobody Dast Blame Us You know the line, right?
single career

Why I Choose to Both Self-Publish and Traditionally Publish

Since 2009, after the release of my second novel, I’ve been a so-called hybrid author, working with New York publishers as well as self-publishing. I’m often asked why I chose to combine these two seemingly disparate publishing careers, juggling twice the work.
Ether (+Bowker): Turning Corners on Self-Publishing and Amazon?

Ether (+Bowker): Turning Corners on Self-Publishing and Amazon?

Here at the 2013 Frankfurt Book Fair this week, if we're not actually walking past a couple of smoothly contoured bends, we may at least be able to peer around them. (1) Self-publishing. We may be seeing a widespread, collective nod of recognition going on; not a big "eureka!" moment, but a frank acknowledgment that the energies of the entrepreneurial-author community no longer can be dismissed as a faddish bubble of activity nor as negligible in their effect. Bowker has stepped in to add some new edge to this concept. (2) Amazon. Not only is there less time and energy wasted on bad-mouthing Seattle here in Frankfurt than in many such earlier gatherings, but one rant against the retailer has been met with stark derision in the publishing community, and, in a more signal moment, a major leader in the business has waved the closest thing we've seen yet to an olive branch.
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writing on the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, JaneFriedman.com, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, PublishingPerspectives.com, The Bookseller.com, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook, CONTEC Conference, Frankfurt Book Fair, Frankfurt Buchmesse, Jonny Geller, Kristin Nelson, Michael Tamblyn, Jon Fine, Hugh Howey, Amanda Barbara, Peter Armstrong, Florian Geuppert, Matthias Matting

Writing on the Ether: Contrarians Among Us

Table of Contents Three Valuable Views A Word for the Publishers Humming the Bookstore And Just Write It Already View
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writing on the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, JaneFriedman.com, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, PublishingPerspectives.com, The Bookseller.com, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook, CONTEC Conference, Frankfurt Book Fair, Frankfurt Buchmesse, Bowker, WriterUnboxed.com, The Metadata Handbook, Thad McIlroy, Renée Register, Jonathan Franzen, Karl Kraus

WRITING ON THE ETHER: What’s Wrong With Franzen?

Jonathan Franzen, in his essay at The Guardian, wants to tell us that Viennese fin-de-siècle essayist Karl Kraus has "a lot to say to us in our own media-saturated, technology-crazed, apocalypse-haunted historical moment."
Best Business Advice for Writers: August 2013

Best Business Advice for Writers: August 2013

Best Business Advice for Writers is a monthly link round-up where I share the best online articles focused on the business of writing and publishing.
WRITING ON THE ETHER: Is Social Reading the End of an Intimacy?

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Is Social Reading the End of an Intimacy?

In social reading, "How much of the author-reader intimacy are we talking about trading away?" Porter Anderson in Writing on the Ether at JaneFriedman.com
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writingon the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, Jane Friedman, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, Publishing Perspectives, The Bookseller, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook, CONTEC Conference, Frankfurt Book Fair, Frankfurt Buchmesse

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Are You Marketing to Your “Adjacent Fans”?

Table of Contents Looking for the "Comp"-etitive Edge Marketing: Not Just for Companies Anymore Wait. Who Wrote That? Looking for
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writingon the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, Jane Friedman, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, Publishing Perspectives, The Bookseller, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook, CONTEC Conference, Frankfurt Book Fair, Frankfurt Buchmesse

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Counting in the Dark

In Writing on the Ether at JaneFriedman.com, Porter Anderson looks at a new effort to rank ebook sales in London -- and at Peter Brantley's worries in the States about e-literature's collection and preservation.
WRITING ON THE ETHER: Is Publishing's Star System Cuckoo?

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Is Publishing’s Star System Cuckoo?

In Writing on the Ether, Porter Anderson looks at the revelation of J.K. Rowling's pseudonym for The Cuckoo's Calling and implications for publishing.
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writingon the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, Jane Friedman, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, Publishing Perspectives, The Bookseller, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Time for Literary Fiction To Come Out of the Cloisters?

In Writing on the Ether at Jane Friedman.com, Porter Anderson looks on the comparative dynamics of literary fiction in the marketplace, amid discussions of Twitter's effectiveness for authors.
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writingon the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, Jane Friedman, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, Publishing Perspectives, The Bookseller, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Should Authors Stop Linking to Amazon To Support Bookstores?

Table of Contents Should Authors Stop Linking to Amazon? Timing, and Interdependence Chewing Each Other's Legs Off Mr. Smith Goes
5 traps of the imagination

5 Traps of the Imagination John Grisham Helped Me See

I had 7 an overflowing shelf of rejection notices when John Grisham—a friend and neighbor—took me under his wing and taught me his writing secrets.
Porter Anderson, PorterAnderson.com, Writingon the Ether, Ether for Authors, London on the Ether, Jane Friedman, Ed Nawotka, Philip Jones, Publishing Perspectives, The Bookseller, books, ebooks, author, agent, Amazon, publishing, The FutureBook

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Let’s Review Criticism

In Writing on the Ether, Porter Anderson at JaneFriedman.com looks at how literary criticism now is divided into three major camps, none fully effective.
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, blog, blogging, journalism, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Digital Book 2013, IDPF, BEA 2013

WRITING ON THE ETHER: The Indies are Coming! to BEA

Porter Anderson looks at how six of the most prominently successful self-publishing authors are taking their own booth (#966) at BookExpo America (#BEA13), staking their claim to a new, unified presence at the industry's big trade show.
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, blog, blogging, journalism, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Digital Book 2013, IDPF, BEA 2013

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Writers in the Inferno

How many authors do you know who seem more renowned among their peers than readers—not because these "thriving ink-slingers" (Michael Deacon) are writing books only other authors could love, but because their output seems to focus on these redundant how-to's designed to crib a few more bucks from fellow would-be renowned authors?
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, blog, blogging, journalism, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Digital Book 2013, IDPF, BEA 2013

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Are Your Books’ Covers Sexist?

Writing on the Ether provides selected news and perspectives on publishing. It is written by journalist and critic Porter Anderson for Jane Friedman and it appears at JaneFriedman.com each Thursday. Sponsorship opportunities are available and offer generous promotion. Ether for Authors—another gas—runs on Mondays at Ed Nawotka's and Frankfurt Book Fair's Publishing Perspectives. London on the Ether, a new UK-related edition of the column, has recently had its debut at TheBookseller.com
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, blog, blogging, journalism, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Springtime for Librarians

Writing on the Ether provides selected news and perspectives on publishing. It is written by journalist and critic Porter Anderson for Jane Friedman and it appears at JaneFriedman.com each Thursday. Sponsorship opportunities are available and offer generous promotion. Ether for Authors—another gas—runs on Mondays at Ed Nawotka's and Frankfurt Book Fair's Publishing Perspectives. London on the Ether, a new UK-related edition of the column, has recently had its debut at TheBookseller.com
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, blog, blogging, journalism, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Agents and Authors at the Coalface

Writing on the Ether provides selected news and perspectives on publishing. It is written by journalist and critic Porter Anderson for Jane Friedman and it appears at JaneFriedman.com each Thursday. Sponsorship opportunities are available and offer generous promotion. Ether for Authors—another gas—runs on Mondays at Ed Nawotka's and Frankfurt Book Fair's Publishing Perspectives. London on the Ether, a new UK-related edition of the column, has recently had its debut at TheBookseller.com
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, TOC, #TOCcon, Author (R)evolution Day, #ARDay, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Sam Missingham, Foyles, #FutureFoyles, London Book Fair, #LBF13

WRITING ON THE ETHER: ‘They’re Letting the Authors In!’

Writing on the Ether provides selected news and perspectives on publishing. It is written by journalist and critic Porter Anderson for Jane Friedman and it appears at JaneFriedman.com each Thursday. Sponsorship opportunities are available and offer generous promotion. Join us on Mondays at Ed Nawotka's and Frankfurt Book Fair's Publishing Perspectives for the new Ether for Authors column.
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, TOC, #TOCcon, Author (R)evolution Day, #ARDay, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Sam Missingham, Foyles, #FutureFoyles, London Book Fair, #LBF13

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Publishing’s Masks Need To Come Off

Writing on the Ether provides selected news and perspectives on publishing. It is written by journalist and critic Porter Anderson for Jane Friedman and it appears at JaneFriedman.com each Thursday. Sponsorship opportunities are available and offer generous promotion. Join us on Mondays at Ed Nawotka's and Frankfurt Book Fair's Publishing Perspectives for the new Ether for Authors column.
Amazon White Glove program

Agent-Assisted Self-Publishing and the Amazon White Glove Program

There are no “rules” for agent-assisted self-publishing, but the biggest drawbacks are usually loss of control and loss of royalties. All authors should negotiate a contract beforehand that protects their rights and lifetime earnings.
agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, TOC, #TOCcon, Author (R)evolution Day, #ARDay, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, The Bookseller, FutureBook, Philip Jones, Sam Missingham, Foyles, #FutureFoyles, London Book Fair, #LBF13

WRITING ON THE ETHER: Authors Need Random House on Board

Writers in the Spotlight: How To Turn Your Readings Into Book Sales with Porter Anderson Join me in this spe­cial
The Future of Publishing: Enigma Variations

The Future of Publishing: 14 Variations (Now Free!)

Last year, on April 1, I released an e-book, The Future of Publishing: Enigma Variations. It was mostly an April Fool's
photo by André Freitas

How Do You Know If Your Agent Is Any Good?

I recently received the following question from a writer who wishes to remain anonymous: Every new writer wants to know