Featured Blog Posts – January 2015 Archive (32)

LinkedIn: 5 Quick Tips

Since I received so many inquires about LinkedIn on my last post, Im going to try to give a quick and dirty explanation of LinkedIn and why every author should have a profile. Of all social media networks, LinkedIn is the most business-oriented. It is a great network to extend your…


Added by Janay Lampkin on January 30, 2015 at 4:30pm — 8 Comments

Why Literary Citizenship Matters

From the day of She Writes' launch--June 29th, 2009--Lori A. May has been here. She was one of the first people to join who I didn't already know personally, and it has been such a pleasure to get to know her here and in our correspondence since then. (She is the founder of the…


Added by Kamy Wicoff on January 29, 2015 at 3:00pm — 9 Comments

Share Your Publishing Story: Study on Modern Women Writers

Virginia Wo olf’s nineteenth-century declarative essay, “A Room of One’s Own,”[1] has been the founding tenet of contemporary female authorship. In her assertion that “a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction,”…


Added by Mohana Rajakumar on January 29, 2015 at 2:00am — 6 Comments

The Agony . . . The Ecstasy . . .

Imagine the thrill of that first published book: your name on the cover, your words filling each page. Who needs a major publisher to promote and distribute when you are brimming with enthusiasm and have put aside a small sum for travel expenses? My novel, The Bone Weaver, semi-self-published by a small indie press, was going to sell; I would make that happen. And there would be bookstore readings and signings, flashbulbs (we're talking 2001, so no cell phone shots) and fans lining…


Added by Victoria Zackheim on January 27, 2015 at 3:00pm — 14 Comments

[REALITY CHECK] Attention to Detail, or The Importance of a Misplaced Penny by Patricia Robertson

Have you ever read a book and become annoyed or disgusted by some anachronistic error that totally broke the spell of the book, or some bit of incorrect detail that snapped your suspension of disbelief?

I have, and I don't like it. Some readers and fans love pointing out mistakes--like Trekkies, for…


Added by Zetta Brown on January 27, 2015 at 7:30am — 3 Comments

[THE WRITER'S LIFE] The Thing About Writing

He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches.

Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman 

As a non-traditional teacher, the quote above has always dogged my teaching experience. I even go so far as to refer to myself as an “educator” rather than a “teacher” so as not to mislead anyone that I am…


Added by Cindy Eastman on January 27, 2015 at 5:00am — 12 Comments

How Your Body Is a Gateway to Your Creative Expression

I read a stunning submission this week from one of my students that had all the elements of good storytelling minus one thing: body sensations. I found myself desperately wanting her to describe the sensations that must have been coming up for her as she wrote about what for her was a…


Added by Brooke Warner on January 26, 2015 at 10:30pm — 11 Comments

How to Craft a Compelling Book Description

Book descriptions can be an effective marketing tool, but they can also be tricky. Here are three keys to writing a good one:

  1. Show, don't tell: Much like an online-dating profile, if you toot your book's horn too much, it's a turnoff. If your book is funny, don't write, "This is a laugh-out-loud story!" Instead, write something funny to describe it. Another downside to the overselling…

Added by Maria Murnane on January 26, 2015 at 8:30am — 4 Comments

[Breakfast with the Muse] Indie Publishing and the Temptation to Rush Work into Print

Several years ago, I took an online writing class with seven or eight other students. One of the members of the class was a brand-new writer who’d just finished a draft of her very first novel.

I remember thinking that her novel had a lot going for it. It wasn’t very good yet, but it had promise—a…


Added by Jill Jepson on January 23, 2015 at 6:00am — 34 Comments

[NETWORKING FOR INTROVERTS] My Favorite Social Media Tools

Social Media: Sigh. We know we need to do it in order to build our author platforms so we can get agents and book deals and make money selling those books, but it can be exhausting. And it never ends. You tweet and you post and you circle and you link and you connect and you Instagram, and then you wake up the next morning and have to do it all over again. When are you supposed to spend time with your family and (IRL) friends? When are you supposed to get…


Added by Meghan Ward on January 22, 2015 at 12:30pm — 19 Comments

Funding Women Artists: “How Long? Not Long.”

Wow!  It has already been a momentous week… and it is not over yet.  It began Monday with the celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a day of…


Added by Yvette Heyliger on January 22, 2015 at 8:30am — No Comments

[The Art of Submission] Go Slowly

I am not a patient person.

My tendency in all things is to go quickly, to get it out of the way, to get it over and done with already. This mentality comes in handy with certain things: moving boxes, cleaning houses, putting away laundry, anything that requires physical strength, really.

But my boyfriend…


Added by Emily Lackey on January 21, 2015 at 6:30am — No Comments

[What's Next?] Time to Read

My path to writing began with reading. I think that great writers always stem from great readers, and while I would not say I have become the former, I definitely spent a good deal of time mastering the latter. When I was in middle school, I was the kid who had hair that often looked dirty…


Added by Caitlyn Levin on January 20, 2015 at 5:00pm — 11 Comments

Grammergency #4: Semicolons—Where Periods and Commas Collide

According to Wikipedia, an Italian publisher named Aldus Manutius the Elder (1449–1515) is credited for having invented the semicolon. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, however, states that the first known use of the semicolon didn’t occur until the year 1644. Whatever the facts are, the first…


Added by Annie Tucker on January 20, 2015 at 9:30am — 7 Comments

Watch for Repetition in Your Writing

My upstairs neighbor Alexandra, who is a big fan of my books, recently read one of my newest titles, Cassidy Lane. She told me she loved it, but she'd also lost track of how many times in the story Cassidy "walked home slowly." I thanked her for her honesty because I hadn't noticed my tendency to overuse that phrase. 


Neither had the developmental editor.


Or the copyeditor.


Or the proofreader.


But my neighbor had, and…


Added by Maria Murnane on January 19, 2015 at 8:30am — 5 Comments

[SWP: Behind the Book] The Nightmare of Publication and the Happy Afterlife of Books


Much has been made of the analogy between publishing a novel and giving birth to a child. Having given birth to two children and published three novels, I can say the two things have very little in common. One of the traits they do share is that the pain involved is quickly forgotten, almost…


Added by Nancy Kricorian on January 17, 2015 at 8:30am — 12 Comments

Don't Hate on #Hashtags

Hashtags are frequently overlooked by social media users, perhaps because they seem confusing or unnecessary. But believe it or not, they are integral to the way…


Added by Janay Lampkin on January 16, 2015 at 2:00pm — 13 Comments

Introducing...Wishful Thinking, Chapter One.

For the past two and a half years, I've been sharing my thoughts, fears, questions, and a few (very few?) answers, as I have worked to complete my first novel at the ripe old age of forty-two. It has been so wonderful, and truly life-saving, at times, to have this community to turn to in a creative endeavor that…


Added by Kamy Wicoff on January 15, 2015 at 2:30pm — 13 Comments

[TIPS OF THE TRADE] Stuck? Go for a Walk!

We’ve all been told that the secret to writing is simply to sit down and write.

Every day, we’re told, we must chain ourselves to our desks and not get up until our daily quota of 500 or 1,000 or 2,000 words is complete. 

The German word “sitzfleisch”—literally, “buttocks”—means the…


Added by Ellen Cassedy on January 13, 2015 at 11:30am — 7 Comments


Happy New Year, y’all!


We are halfway through the first month of 2015...how many of you still have resolutions? Don’t feel bad if you’ve fallen off the wagon. My resolution is, “No resolution shall go unbroken.”


But I will say that I’m doing something different this year that I…


Added by Zetta Brown on January 13, 2015 at 7:30am — 4 Comments

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