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Reflections on writing, publishing, writing craft, and more from our editorial staff.

Considering Distinctive Identity in Fiction Series and Its Importance in Cultivating a Loyal Readership

One piece of advice authors who write popular fiction often hear is that your odds of landing an agent and a traditional publishing deal can improve considerably when your novel is conceived as (or has the potential to work as) a series. This should come as no surprise to anyone who enjoys settling down with a new book in a series you know and love. To do so represents an easy purchase decision publishers and booksellers know they can rely on […]

By |2022-01-18T22:46:24+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Genre, Getting Published, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, Traditional Publishing|Comments Off on Considering Distinctive Identity in Fiction Series and Its Importance in Cultivating a Loyal Readership

Make Your Book a Movie or TV / Streaming Series

by John Robert Marlow

Humans have always been storytellers. Whether gathered around a campfire, painting on cave walls, or writing words on dead trees or glowing screens—it’s in our blood. Books and other storytelling formats can be noble undertakings, capable of reaching hundreds of thousands and sometimes millions of people. But movies and series are the global campfires of our time.

And those fires have become more numerous—offering adaptable storytellers an unprecedented opportunity to get their stories on the screen. While the […]

By |2022-01-06T15:20:13+00:00|General, JRM, Screenwriting & Screenplay Adaptation|Comments Off on Make Your Book a Movie or TV / Streaming Series

Adapting Your Book for the Screen A Hollywood Primer

by John Robert Marlow

So you want your book to be a movie. (Or series.) Who doesn’t, right? Most authors dream about this, but few do more than cross their fingers and hope Hollywood will come knocking. And, hey, sometimes that happens. Usually after the book (or book series) has become hugely successful in its own right, thus drawing Hollywood’s attention. Because in the same way that sharks are drawn to blood, Hollywood is drawn to money. But…

By |2022-01-12T17:57:04+00:00|JRM, Screenwriting & Screenplay Adaptation|Comments Off on Adapting Your Book for the Screen A Hollywood Primer

Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

If you’re a fan of JK Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith, you’re probably well aware how much longer her latest release is than the other four books in the series.

My own first reaction to the size of the hefty tome—darn near 1,000 pages in hardcover—was mostly: Terrific! More of a good thing to look forward to. 

But I must confess to some trepidation as well. For me, one of the appeals of the mystery genre is […]

By |2021-05-11T16:15:08+00:00|Mystery, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Up until last week, one notable blind spot in my reading life was Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. I loved the movies of the Sean Connery and Roger Moore era but, unimpressed by a later book in the series (written by one of four authors who took the helm after Fleming died), decided that Bond was a character best enjoyed on the screen. It was the somewhat formulaic nature of the stories and lack of character depth in […]

By |2021-05-11T17:04:29+00:00|Book Reviews and Analysis, RSB, The Writer’s Craft, Thriller|Comments Off on CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Paths to Publishing: Thinking Ahead A primer on traditional and independent publishing options in 2021

by Ross Browne and John Robert Marlow

Publishing has changed a lot in the 40 years since The Editorial Department opened its doors—and not necessarily for the better, in the eyes of many. But it’s nonetheless an exciting time to be a writer, in large part because when it comes to getting published, you have more options than ever before.

While traditional publishing’s priorities often feel more corporate and profit-driven in this era, there are still plenty of fine literary agents […]

By |2021-05-11T16:53:43+00:00|General, Getting Published, JRM, Self Publishing, Traditional Publishing|Comments Off on Paths to Publishing: Thinking Ahead A primer on traditional and independent publishing options in 2021