Today Shall Henceforth Be Known as “The Day I First Met Meg Cabot”

True story. Went to the 31st Annual Conference of the Romance Writers of America in the NYC Marriott just to get her signature for my sister’s copy of Abandon.  I desperately wish that I also owned a copy of The Princess Diaries to have gotten signed for myself and I desperately wish that my friendContinue reading “Today Shall Henceforth Be Known as “The Day I First Met Meg Cabot””

Reading Material, Including a Little Known Harry Potter Short Story

Every once in a while I need to step away from my latest creative writing project and get some fresh perspective on the craft. On Writing by Stephen King I’m not a huge fan of Stephen King–I know, I know, this fact outrages a lot of people–or his writing style, this book included.  I wasContinue reading “Reading Material, Including a Little Known Harry Potter Short Story”

Unexpected Writing Scams: Should You Pay to Submit Your Writing?

Like Brevity, I’m a little confused about the cancellation of the Richard M. Thorson Literary Prize for Agrarian Prose, for the allegedly unacceptable practice of charging contest submission fees.  Very nearly every sanctioned writing contest I’ve ever entered, I’ve been required to pay a small reading fee.  None of them were scams.  Many were postedContinue reading “Unexpected Writing Scams: Should You Pay to Submit Your Writing?”

Healing From Rejection

For those of you feeling a little bummed about a recent rejection letter, I recommend you check this out. Learning to accept rejection is imperative for any writer. Most writers realize this quickly. Or they make the mistake of self-publishing (guilty as charged). But one important aspect of rejection that many do not consider isContinue reading “Healing From Rejection”

Choices: Do New Writers Have to Submit to Online Literary Journals?

Like Chicken Little, a lot of people are running around shouting that the publishing world is going under.  This allegedly inevitable transformation to digital is going to delete jobs, while journals and magazines that don’t keep up and reformat for iPad will go extinct.  Literary journals are traditionally characterized as small and underfunded.  Basically, they’reContinue reading “Choices: Do New Writers Have to Submit to Online Literary Journals?”

How to Grab an Editor’s Attention: Bragging (Politely) in Your Query Letter–With Example

  For those of you who are shy and don’t like bragging about your publishing credits for fear of being impolite, stop being shy!  Literary journal editors and literary agents WANT to hear about that stuff!  A query letter and a cover letter are like job interviews.  Proving that you’re a qualified writer helps you–andContinue reading “How to Grab an Editor’s Attention: Bragging (Politely) in Your Query Letter–With Example”

Elementary: You Don’t Need to be Sherlock Holmes to Figure Out What’s Wrong With Your Manuscript

You just need to be Extremely Patient.  In the Ungodly Long-Term sense. I have this middle-grade historical fiction novel about Joan of Arc that I’ve been working on for what feels like forever.  I researched for a year and a half.  Towards the end of that research process, I simultaneously wrote the first draft inContinue reading “Elementary: You Don’t Need to be Sherlock Holmes to Figure Out What’s Wrong With Your Manuscript”