Anne R. Allen wrote the perfect blog post about the first bad review, and I would recommend every young/new author to read it. She writes with compassion and humor. Thanks for this one, Anne! You rock!
I’m not sure anything stings as much as that first bad review. You’re riding high in triumph. You finished the project that may have taken decades to complete. Then you survived the crushing editing/ querying/ rejections/ revising/ editing again process. But now you’re finally a published author.
Whether the publisher is yourself or the Random Penguin House, the feeling is the same. It’s your baby and you just gave birth. You are experiencing a moment of bliss.
That review. Somebody hates your baby. They really hate it. You are a talentless hack and a worthless defiler of language. They say you should never write another word and suggest you take up underwater basket-weaving or making throw pillows out of dryer lint.
Do you plan to write your memoir? If yes, don’t miss Karen Coiffi’s blog post. She provides us with rules to write our memoir. Thank you very much, Karen!
on Writers on the Move:
Writing a memoir is different things to different people. Some people are looking for closure, or a cathartic release from a traumatic event in their lives, others simply want to share their experiences with readers. Or possibly, the author wants to impart some wisdom or insight to the reader.
Whatever the reason behind writing a memoir, there are a few rules that should be adhered to.
Kristen Lamb, wonderful person, talented author, patient supporter and humorous advisor in one attractive body, provides us with a new great blog post! Thank you, Kristen.
Advice floats around everywhere. We get it from friends, family, cutesy memes, gurus, life coaches, books, television, podcasts and…bloggers *giggles*. We’re subjected to advice, whether we want it or not.
Please, let me be clear. Wise counsel is a good thing. Definitely.
We certainly don’t want to try and do this “life thing” with zero guidance. But the influx of so many opinions can be confusing, maybe even make us a tad crazy.
But these days, advice has gotten out of hand. It’s even invaded fortune cookies. Our FORTUNE COOKIES! Yes, we’ve been ordering a lot of take-out recently.
Remember those who persist enjoy success.
Okay, I’m throwing a flag on the play. THAT???? Is NOT a fortune cookie. Fortune cookies don’t offer unsolicited advice. I have a mom for that (I love you, Mom).
A fortune cookie is FUN and something we know is probably bunk, but would be super cool if it were true.
You will soon have good fortune in your endeavors.
Thank you very much for this information about agents looking for books, Erica Verrillo. We really appreciate your help!
on Publishing … and Other Forms of Insanity:
Here are four new literary agents actively seeking clients.
Mariah Nicholsis interested in adult and young adult fiction with genres including thriller, upmarket, romance/rom-com, horror, family drama, science fiction/paranormal, and women’s fiction. She is also wanting to represent nonfiction in categories such as cookbooks, memoirs, self-help, lifestyle, and how-to. Stories that showcase diversity and highlight mental health or special needs is something that she would especially like to see.
Amy Giuffrida wants middle grade and YA horror, romance, fantasy and mystery as well as adult Horror, Romance/Chic Lit/Rom Com and nonfiction.
Shanna Furey is looking for Historical Fiction and Non-Fiction, Mystery, Fantasy, Young Adult, Comedic, or General Fiction. Devon Halliday is interested in literary and upmarket fiction with sharp, insightful writing and vivid characters. She’s partial to speculative fiction, women’s fiction, contemporary fiction, metafiction, light psychological suspense, and romcoms. She leans toward adult fiction, but will also consider YA and cross-over projects.
On the nonfiction side Devon is on the lookout for creative and narrative nonfiction, investigative journalism, broad-perspective memoir, and popular science, psychology, medicine, and philosophy.
Always check the agency website and agent bio before submitting. Agents can switch agencies or close their lists, and submission requirements can change.
Thank you very much for informing us about the Why’s and How’s of starting our blog. I hope, we can read part 2 soon. This is a great post! Thanks, Kat!
on A Chat with Kat:
“I wish I had my own platform where I could share my views or knowledge. Maybe even build up a positive reputation in my community and an engaged audience.”
If you’ve ever thought something along those lines, you’re just like me. For many months, I read great blogs like Mr Money Mustache and listened to amazing podcasts like The Tim Ferriss Show, wishing I myself had a platform like that. But was I interesting enough? Experienced enough? Funny enough?
Welcome to my mini series on starting your own blog! In the next two weeks, we will explore why starting your own online platform is a recipe for success, no matter who you are, and the practical steps of how to start your own blog.
I took a screenshot and deleted personal stuff so you could see what it looks like.
Firstly, how did I know this was a scam? Simple – I don’t use Microsoft OneDrive. I have NEVER used OneDrive.
Next, if you look at the email sender it says:
Not even a hint of Microsoft anywhere. ‘mail.onedrive’ is a domain that has nothing to do with Microsoft. [When you register a domain, no one else can use it. But there is nothing to stop someone from registering a domain that ‘hints’ at belonging to a well known company].
And finally, do you see the big, red ‘YOU’? I put that in to highlight the poor grammar used in the body of the email. You won’t always find poor grammar, but when you do, it’s a dead giveaway. Whoever set up this scam…
Thank you very much, K.M. Weiland, for this very interesting POV on POV Extra Characters! I really appreciate the article.
on Helping Writers become Authors:
Sooner or later, most authors find the constraints of POV frustrating. It can be difficult to observe the strictures of a tight POV while still showing readers all of a scene’s necessary information. Seemingly, one of the easiest ways around this problem is to simply add a new POV from a character who is able to share the information you want to convey.
However, it’s always wise to think twice before adding another POV character.
Humans are able to feel so unbelievably strong emotions: Love, hate, reflux…
– unknown –
When did we stop writing love letters? When was the classic ‘love letter’ a relict of the past?
In my opinion, technological progress has not only killed a lot of our ability to communicate but also our ability to write, maybe to be romantic…
Where did these little notes go?
From what I hear, nowadays, people send each other texts. They start dating, sending texts, women are hurt when their love interest doesn’t text back within five minutes, the rate of misunderstandings within text messages is enormous, and often couples argue by text, and at the end, break up by text. It’s so much easier to send short messages, than to say what we feel… or: in this case, to write it down.
I recommend picking the right stationery. It doesn’t have to be pink with hearts… but tasteful and a bit romantic.
You don’t have to be a writer to express honest feelings by writing them down. When you’re not sure about grammar and spelling, please hand the letter over to someone you trust to correct your letter. There’s nothing worse than your love interest roaring with laughter about your ‘meestakes.’
Maybe you might refrain from rhyming, in particular when you’re not used to writing poetry. In a love letter, it’s important to be true to how you feel and not try to impress.
I would walk on my knees in front of you
show you how much worship I can do.
Your heart, it pulses, it feels like a shock
in accordance with my …. uhm… soul.
And no, this is definitely not a verse for your love letter. (Unless you have a really humorous partner, of course).
Write what’s deep in your heart. Express what’s in your head, let the other one know that he/she is important to you. There is a choice of words that are important for your letter:
Feel free to add more words to the list, in particular, important ones… they don’t need to have to be important to us, but to you – and your loved one.
Maybe you know each other for a while; maybe you are a couple already and have gone through a lot with each other, or maybe you want to tell someone how you feel? It doesn’t matter. As long as you express your deepest emotions and be honest, your letter is going to touch your recipient’s heart and soul.
Let me give you an example… a letter, addressed to someone who wishes to start a relationship, expressing affection and hope.
We met through a phone call. When I particularized my situation, you immediately consented to help me. What a big heart you have! You didn’t have to, and still, you supported me. You were always there for me! We talked, and our conversations brought us closer.
We met a bit later personally, and that meeting only confirmed that I found who I was looking for, someone to trust, someone to feel safe with, someone to hope…
Our conversations, these endless, wonderful, humorous, and informative conversations… I cannot deny I’m addicted to these conversations. I love talking to you, I love hearing your voice, I love hearing your laughter, and when we don’t talk, I miss you… and I wish, one day, I would hear the same from your lips.
I wish I could hear the birds sing with you, I wish I could listen to the rain with you, I wish I could see you soon, I wish, I wish, I wish… you are someone special. I hope, one day, I will be able to tell you that, without embarrassment or humiliation, without any awkward feeling, but with a warm smile, and maybe with a hug.
With all my heart
I know, this is far away from Do you love me, yes/no/maybe. But it is clear, honest, and emotional. And that’s what you want when you write your love letter.
(Of course, you can hire someone to write your love letter. And yes, I do that occasionally, even though it’s not cheap). But that isn’t how it should be. A big part of a love letter is that part that you send with your words: your heart, your tears, yourself.
Anne R. Allen informs us on her blog about four newbie writer mistakes that can derail a great book idea. Thanks for your information on that, Anne.
You’ve got a fantastic idea for a novel. It’s been hanging around for quite a while, knocking inside your noggin. The idea keeps saying, “Let me out! Release me! Put me in a book!”
Maybe there’s a scene in your head that plays like a video, with every detail of the setting right there, as if it’s on a screen. You know those characters. They’re like real people to you.
But you’ve never had the time to write it all down.
Now you do.
So here you are, finally banging out that scene. And another. And pretty soon you’ve written 10,000, maybe 15,000 words of brilliant, deathless prose. It almost wrote itself. Wow. That was almost too easy.
It IS brilliant, isn’t it?
Well, maybe not. Maybe what’s on the page isn’t quite as good it seemed when you were in the zone.
In fact, it could be terrible. What if you have no talent for writing at all? Maybe you should be in the living room doing that kitten jigsaw puzzle with Grandma instead. How do you know if you’re any good?
You’ll have to ask somebody knowledgeable. Like a published author.
And this — this is when you fall down the rabbit hole.