The Secret to Writing a Great Book

The Secret to Writing a Great Book
Jul 14, 2017

To be successful (which for me means completing a book others will want to read) your vision for the book must be powerful and clear.

Does Writing Advice Work for You?

Does Writing Advice Work for You?
Jul 09, 2017

Maybe not, and that's okay: ultimately, the only thing that matters is what works for you.

How to Get the Most Out of Feedback

How to Get the Most Out of Feedback
Nov 20, 2016

I believe in the value of feedback. But I also believe, strongly, that writers must be prepared for what is to come or else critiques can be wildly counter productive.

A Writer's Search for Flow

A Writer's Search for Flow
Oct 03, 2016

When we have time to write—hours upon hours of uninterrupted time—do we get more done? Are we happier? The answer may seem obvious, but think again.

What Really Happens When Your Book Launches

What Really Happens When Your Book Launches
Sep 28, 2016

We all know that the process of writing a book is complex and full of surprises and leads to uncertain outcomes. But when our books come out, few of us know what to do.

Warning Signs that You Landed a Bad Agent

Warning Signs that You Landed a Bad Agent
Aug 03, 2016

What should you expect from an agent? How will you know which is the best agent for you? What are warning signs that things are going wrong?

How to Survive Submitting Your Writing to Editors

How to Survive Submitting Your Writing to Editors
Jul 06, 2016
Sharing new work is always agonizing. There's just no way around it. But here are some ideas so you survive the process...

Inside an Editor’s Mind: Reading First Pages

Inside an Editor’s Mind: Reading First Pages
Jun 01, 2016
I used to wonder how it was possible that the first five pages of a manuscript could matter so much. It seemed unfair and shortsighted. But...

What it Means to Work "Collaboratively" on Writing Projects

What it Means to Work "Collaboratively" on Writing Projects
Mar 02, 2016

When my old friend Dean asked for help, I was intrigued...

How to Successfully Screw Up Your Search for a Literary Agent

How to Successfully Screw Up Your Search for a Literary Agent
Feb 03, 2016

A few sure fire ways of ensuring you won't be snagging that agent...

Should You Care About the Word Count?

Should You Care About the Word Count?
Jan 06, 2016
The first few pages have to grab readers by the throat and not let go. Every page thereafter has to thrum with energy, imagination, insight. You have way more to prove if you’re going to write something that demands upfront that readers take a risk on you.

Hanging on the Telephone

Hanging on the Telephone
Dec 02, 2015
For those seeking traditional publication, there are a few times in a writer's life when a phone call is all-important, rather than email: when you are trying to get an agent, and when the agent is submitting to publishers.

Questions That Can Drive Writers Crazy

Questions That Can Drive Writers Crazy
Oct 07, 2015

What happens when you stop pushing so hard?

Writing Fiction Based on True Events--Watch Out!

Writing Fiction Based on True Events--Watch Out!
Sep 02, 2015
Have you ever had someone read your work and say, “I don’t know. It just doesn’t seem that plausible to me…” when you’ve written about something that really took place?

Seeking Success as a Writer? Hurry Up & Slow Down

Seeking Success as a Writer? Hurry Up & Slow Down
Aug 05, 2015
Can you hurry the creative process? When you launch a book, is it possible to blow through everything on your marketing to-do list?

Busted: Two Book Launch Myths

Busted: Two Book Launch Myths
Jul 01, 2015
Had I known 20 years ago what I now know about the book business, I might never have tried to become a writer—yet I’m so happy that I invested all that time and sweat equity into learning the ropes. Thank God for those myths that kept me going.

If Your Novel Needs More Urgency and Momentum, Ask These Seven Questions!

If Your Novel Needs More Urgency and Momentum, Ask These Seven Questions!
Jun 03, 2015

How often when you're writing or revising a novel do you know what has to happen... but you just don't know how to get there? 

Key Elements of a Novel's Critical First Pages

Key Elements of a Novel's Critical First Pages
May 06, 2015

You’ve only got one chance to make a first impression. 

Why Mood Matters When You're Editing

Why Mood Matters When You're Editing
Apr 01, 2015

You can ruin a perfectly good book if your mood is wrong when it's time to edit.