I apologize for my lack of posts lately. Things have gotten crazy around here, but I have a lot of new resources to share with authors when I do find the time. First on the list is part 2 of T.A. Grey’s eBook formatting guide.
Every scene in your book should count, whether its purpose is to further the plot or build empathy for your characters. This is why I liked the article 10 Checkpoints for Your Scene. It’s a neat little checklist that will help you determine if your scenes have all the necessary elements to be, not only important to the story, but complete as well.
Writers’ Toolbox: Links of the Week #20
Happy Saturday! What? It’s Memorial weekend? OMG, what am I doing inside. I have weeding to do, plants to put in the garden, roses to train, books to read, a MS to edit…and more blogs to read 🙂 I have a pretty collection for you today and don’t forget to listen to Jeff’s music selection today. You won’t regret this listen, it’s powerful.
Suzanne Rock at Romance on a Budget shares a tip Do you have Business Cards?
Darcy Pattison at Fiction Notes had some great reminders 5 Plot Fixes for Peace Makers
Alan Chin posted this week Writing Tip #36 Story Starter Questions. Very interesting collection of 12-questions. A quick test to see if your plot is missing something.
Janice Hardy at The Other Side of the Story had a brilliant line at the beginning of her post on plots this week: “The house is story. Decorating is plot.”…
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If you are looking for a way to get noticed, or add some credits to add to your query letter, winning a writing contest is a great way to do it. Agents and publishers like to know that your manuscript has already received recognition. Not to mention, it shows that you probably have been networking and that will help them sell you and your book to prospective publishers because you’ve already made a name for yourself.
I have to thank Caszie for this recommendation. Savvy Authors is holding a five-day event for writers, Savvy Authors SUMMER SYMPOSIUM. I’m new to the site, so I don’t know much about it. It looks as though you have to pay to attend the online conference, but it looks like it’ll be really informative.
Here’s what the site has to say…
Join us for five days as we talk craft – from plot and character, to dialogue, suspense, theme and story question (with a bunch of stuff in between) in chats, Q&A forums and mini-workshops. Our presenters will be sharing what works – whether it’s worldbuilding or setting or layering in back story; or even if it’s technical detail and the fruits of research, they’ll be exposing the craft that underlies a good story. We’ll also be talking about publishing and promoting, offering pitch opportunities to the attendees and raffling off books on craft from folks like James Scott Bell novels, gift certificates, workshops, 3-chapter critiques from published authors and more.
Check back often as we’re still adding more workshops, chats, Q&A’s & raffles
We all make mistakes, but too many can kill your chance of getting published. The problem is that no one can write a perfect manuscript. The article, How not to Yank Your Readers Out of the Story, points out some pretty massive flaws that even some NYT Bestselling authors have made. Check it out, you do not want to repeat these.
Everyone loves a freebie, and publishing companies know it. That is why booksellers like Barnes and Noble and Amazon, always have free ebooks on their shelves. It’s a great way to get readers to try new authors, and it’s a fantastic advertising strategy.
While surfing Amazon’s list of limited-time promotional offers, I ran into Lila Dubois’ Lights, Camera…Monsters. I was so excited! I’ve wanted to read this book for months now, I just hadn’t gotten around to purchasing it yet.
Thank you Amazon and Samhain!
Finals are finally over! Thank you all for your patience and well wishes. I’m back, and with me I bring six beautiful covers from Total-E-Bound Publishing.
Editing is never painless, even for those who are good at it. It’s easy to miss the small things like repeated words or slow pacing, and beta readers aren’t perfect. Autocrit.com has been a blessing. This program examines 11 different areas of your writing (pacing, clichés, repeated words, dialogue, pronouns, sentence variation, etc.). Better yet, it’ll examine your entire novel at once to give you an over all picture. Go to the website and give it a test drive, you’ll be amazed by what this program catches.
Much like Pub Rants, Bookends, LLC — A Literary Agency is a blog written to help aspiring authors land an agent. These agents know it’s not easy, because they’re the ones that reject hundreds of queries every week. Believe it or not, they are not out to get you, and they enjoy giving rejection about as much as you enjoy receiving it. So do yourself a favor and keep and eye on these blogs and others like them.
It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with beautiful cover art, and I willingly admit that I judge books by their covers. That is why I urge all authors to check out a publisher’s cover art before you send them your proposal. If they don’t take the time to produce good cover, then they’re not marketing your book properly. To help save everyone some time, every Thursday I’ll showcase a different publisher’s artwork.
Below are a few selections from Evernight Publishing.
When it comes to writing query letters, I cannot tell you what to do. I can explain format and what agents/publishers expect, but there is no secret formula that I know of–if you have one please share the wealth :). What I can offer you is SlushPile Hell, a blog that will tell you things you shouldn’t do.
It might not be a secret formula, but it’s a start.
Draumr Publishing deserves a pat on the back for their Dangerous Curves line, featuring beautiful big women as their heroines. These stories do not focus on women losing weight to gain acceptance or to win the heroes attention, but rather on big women being loved for who they are. Dangerous Curves sells sub-genres of romance including, but not limited to: erotica, paranormal, contemporary, chick lit, lesbian, adventure, science fiction, historical, fantasy, suspense and horror. It’s about time a publisher realized that not all women are built the same, and neither are all heroines. Big is beautiful, too.
What truly impresses me is that Draumr is accepting genres outside of the normal “humorous” take on curvaceous romance. I like that the book can have a Gothic or suspenseful atmosphere. It’s books like these that will help beat stereotyping, and build the average woman’s self-esteem.
Draumr Publishing is actively seeking stories for this imprint. For more information on the Dangerous Curves imprint, and other themed submissions, check out my page, Open Call For Submissions.
We have discussed Writer Beware and Predators & Editors. Both are invaluable websites when you’re trying to decide who to query. Another great resource for checking the credibility of an agency is The Association of Authors’ Representatives(AAR). AAR is a nonprofit organization dedicated to setting a standard for agents. In order for agents to gain an AAR membership, they must met certain requirements and agree to the a code of ethics. It’s kind of like a Better Business Bureau for literary agents.
Remember, not all reputable literary agents belong to this organization, and the ones who do aren’t monitored at all times. Make sure to use all resources available to make sure you’re not being scammed.