A Writer’s Life

Why Didn’t I Say “Yes” to Your Submission?

When an agent or editor requests your partial or full manuscript, it’s nerve wracking to wait and wonder, day after day, if they’re reading it and whether they like it. If they finally decide not to offer representation, it hurts and you just want to know… why? Most agents try to offer some kind of explanation…
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How to get published

Should You Blog Your Novel?

A blog reader wrote, “The topic of posting a rough draft of a novel has become a hot topic with my writing friends. Some of us do it and others don’t. I’ve heard different opinions on this when it comes to publishing. Some folks claim an agent wouldn’t touch the project, while others say having a blog…
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Reading on a tablet

How to Read More Blogs in Less Time

If you’re anything like me, you want to keep up with blogs that interest you, yet it’s easy to become overwhelmed with the sheer volume of information available on the web. To make sure you’re not missing anything important yet avoid being crushed by the number of blogs, you need an easy way to keep…
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Target

How to Create a Style Sheet for Your Manuscript

If you’ve been writing books for long, you may have come across the challenge of keeping the details straight so that you can be consistent throughout the book. If the hero has blue eyes on page 1, he shouldn’t have green eyes on page 50. If your non-fiction book capitalizes “Servant Leadership” in the first…
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Scarcity

Letting Go of Scarcity Thinking

I have noticed that our culture is permeated with scarcity thinking, and the world of books and publishing is no exception. Do any of these thoughts sound familiar? ♦ Another author just got a 2-book deal. That’s two less spots for me. ♦ An agent just announced a new client. There goes my shot. ♦ Look how many…
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afraid

What Would You Do If You Weren’t Afraid?

Lately I’ve been hearing this question over and over again: What would you do if you weren’t afraid? It’s a good question, meant to inspire us to dream beyond our boundaries, to “think big,” to pursue our goals. But I think we tend to hear it and then brush it off, not really spending time with…
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Taxes and Writers

Taxes and Writers

It’s April 15th, woohoo! One of my favorite days of the year. NOT. Awhile back I blogged about making a living as a writer (Part 1 and Part 2), so today we’re going to talk about the unfortunate side effect of getting paid for your writing. Yup, it’s…. Taxes. Disclaimer: I’m not going to thoroughly…
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Make a Living as a Writer – Part 1

I’m going to make this very simple: The secret to making a living wage as a writer lies in two words: volume and variety. Today let’s talk about the first one. Volume The biggest mistake writers make with respect to their “publishing dreams” is hoping for one big break that’s going to change their lives,…
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Blog

Blogs I Follow

I’m an avid reader of blogs. I have dozens in my Google Reader and I take the opportunity to read, especially on my phone or iPad, whenever I have a few moments to spare. I’ve been asked numerous times to share the blogs I read, so here is a sampling. My list might be a…
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Future

What Does the Future Hold?

I was talking with a friend who works in the financial industry, and a question came up about what we would each be doing 30 years from now. My friend was anticipating a prosperous retirement at that point, having built up a significant and valuable business. While the financial life of our nation has its…
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thinking negative

Try “Thinking Negative” for a Change

I’m an optimist by nature — I usually expect things will all work out. But I find that I’m more successful and experience less disappointment when I practice “thinking negative.” What do I mean by that? When I “think negative,” I factor into my habitual “positive thinking” a realistic assessment of the difficulties, challenges or obstacles…
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7 Ways to Look Good on Your Webcam

Have you been on Skype lately? Had a meeting via Google+ hangout? Done any video-blogging? These days more of us are communicating via video rather than just voice or the written word — and I highly recommend it. People seem to like it because  communication is more effective and memorable when you can see the…
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The Lonely Life of the Writer

People often ask me what I do for a living. If I say “I’m a literary agent,” I’m likely to receive a blank stare. I quickly tell them I work with authors to help them get their books published; sometimes I’ll say, “You know how actors and athletes have agents? Well, authors have agents too.”…
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Reading

Who Should Read Your Unpublished Work?

One of the most common pieces of advice writers are given is: Get outside feedback. Published or not, writers typically show their work to beta readers, critique partners, friends, family members or anyone who will read it, to get feedback before submitting to an editor, agent or publisher. I’m one of those who frequently gives…
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I love words.

I love books and publishing and talking incessantly about them.

I love authors and all the intricacies of managing a writing life.

I sell. I negotiate. I coach. I brainstorm.

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