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Evaluating Nonfiction: One Editor’s Approach What can set your nonfiction manuscript up for success ... or doom it to the reject pile

by Peter Gelfan

Fiction lives or dies by the author’s storytelling and writing skills (and perseverance and some luck). For nonfiction, then, one might assume that likewise, an interesting topic well elucidated will do the job. However, the publishing industry and readers regard nonfiction a bit differently.

Subject Matter

Publishers generally have certain prerequisites for even considering a nonfiction project. The first of course is whether the subject matter has a market. In other words, they have to think that enough […]

By |2019-06-17T16:46:39+00:00|PG, The Editor’s Craft, The Editorial Process, Traditional Publishing|Comments Off on Evaluating Nonfiction: One Editor’s Approach What can set your nonfiction manuscript up for success ... or doom it to the reject pile

Spotlight on Developmental Editing An overview of why it’s needed, how it works, and what to expect from the process

When many people think of editing, they think of arcane symbols and scribbled margin notes in red or blue pencil – move this paragraph, delete these words, add a hyphen, correct that spelling, capitalize this letter. And while that is an important part of editing, it’s only one part, and it comes last.  So let’s talk about what comes first: developmental editing.

If you’re like many of us in the writing world, you wrote the first draft of your manuscript and then revised […]

By |2019-07-19T16:26:57+00:00|The Editor’s Craft, The Editorial Process|Comments Off on Spotlight on Developmental Editing An overview of why it’s needed, how it works, and what to expect from the process

Miss Manners for Authors, Part 3 Reviews, good and bad

So what about reviews? If you get a good one—from a stranger, not your mom—it’s cause for major celebration: dancing around the room, busting out the champagne, wildly bursting into a song from The Sound of Music. But if you get a bad one, well, nothing can ruin your day faster. Now that your baby, aka your “book,” is out in the world and earning its keep, how do you deal with the emotional highs and lows of audience reaction?

By |2019-06-17T16:51:07+00:00|Miscellaneous|Comments Off on Miss Manners for Authors, Part 3 Reviews, good and bad

South of Hell by P.J. Parrish A “First 50” Review

by Ross Browne

Flap Copy: For Louis Kincaid and his lover, female detective Joe Frye, the present and the past collide when they team up to find out what happened to Jean Brandt, who was reported missing by her husband from their Michigan farmhouse in 1981. Jean’s daughter Amy, only five at the time, has been plagued by dream-like memories of a violent killing, and it is assumed that the murder she has seen is her mother’s. But as Amy’s veracity as […]

By |2019-06-17T16:54:27+00:00|First 50, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on South of Hell by P.J. Parrish A “First 50” Review

Recommended Reading: Word Play by Peter Farb An enlightening study of language that’s a gold mine for dialogue-conscious novelists

by Ross Browne

Word Play by Peter Farb may not have been written with novelists in mind, but it’s chock full of good insights for writers, especially on the topic of dialogue. (You can check out the book here.)

One chapter I find especially interesting is on verbal dueling. The author’s position is summed up nicely in the very first paragraph with the statement:

“Most speakers unconsciously duel even during seemingly casual conversation, as can often be observed at social gatherings […]

By |2019-06-17T16:57:13+00:00|Book Reviews and Analysis, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Recommended Reading: Word Play by Peter Farb An enlightening study of language that’s a gold mine for dialogue-conscious novelists

The Truth about First Novels and Traditional Publication What authors need to know

by Renni Browne

What you might hear:

  • “Acquisitions editors at major publishing houses don’t want to read first-novel submissions.”
  • “Literary agents don’t want to take on unknown writers anymore.”
  • “Publishers only want novelists who have a strong platform or a great track record of book sales.”
  • “If by a miracle you get a first novel published, it’ll sell 500 copies to your friends and relatives.”
  • “There’s no place for first novels in today’s bottom-line-oriented publishing scene.”

Would it surprise you to learn […]

By |2018-05-16T21:08:01+00:00|Getting Published, RDB, Traditional Publishing, Trends|Comments Off on The Truth about First Novels and Traditional Publication What authors need to know