Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Flog a Pro: would you turn this bestselling author’s first page?

Trained by reading hundreds of submissions, editors and agents often make their read/not-read decision on the first page. In a customarily formatted book manuscript with chapters starting about 1/3 of the way down the page (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type), there are 16 or 17 lines on the first page. The challenge: does this narrative […]

Flog a Pro: would you turn this bestselling author’s first page?

Trained by reading hundreds of submissions, editors and agents often make their read/not-read decision on the first page. In a customarily formatted book manuscript with chapters starting about 1/3 of the way down the page (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type), there are 16 or 17 lines on the first page. The challenge: does this narrative […]

Pram in the Hall

You know that question everyone always asks writers? The one about what we do all day? In my experience most writers spend their days doing a lot of nothing — interspersed with trying in vain to organize vast teetering piles of books and papers, totally forgetting the thing we swore blind we’d be doing this […]

Are You Publishable or Not? Reading the Tea Leaves.

Writing never feels more lonely than after you’ve sent your manuscript out to every agent and publisher you can think of and gotten nowhere. Of course, you can always take comfort in the long list of massively successful books that were initially rejected by nearly everyone who saw them. But for every brilliant book that […]

Envy: a Lesson in What Not to Do

A couple of weeks ago, an author in the UK named Lynn Shepherd made one of the more bafflingly boneheaded moves I’ve seen in a long time, by posting a blog on the Huffington Post entitled “If JK Rowling Cares About Writing, She Should Stop Doing It.” Many of you probably read it, and/or saw […]

MFA vs NYC vs DIY

Last week my Twitter stream lit up with reviews and excerpts and analysis of a book called MFA vs NYC. It wasn’t quite a #sharknado level of traffic — closer, perhaps, to #amtrakresidency — but it was still undeniable: something about this book was grabbing the attention of writers all up and down the line. […]

A Novelist’s Baby Blues or Surviving a Debut Launch

In continuing the look behind the scenes in publishing here at Writer Unboxed, I felt compelled to share something I very recently went through—the baby blues. My debut novel BECOMING JOSEPHINE—about the woman who stole Napoleon’s heart and enchanted an empire—just released last month. I should be so proud and still on a high. People […]

After You Publish

Back in 2004, Mark Zuckerberg and some friends launched a social networking website in his dorm room — Facebook. By 2007, he was a billionaire. In 1995, J. K. Rowling typed the manuscript for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on a manual typewriter and, after numerous rejections, sold it to Bloomsbury Press for an […]

Guest Articles: The New “It” Media Opportunity

Around the time blogs first started catching on, writer Julie Powell decided – just for the heck of it – to cook every recipe in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking and chronicle the experience on her blog. We all know her story’s happy ending. Soon every writer was launching or joining a […]

The Out-of-Control Author

When you’re writing just for yourself, you’re in control. Of everything. You control what your characters do, what they say and think and wear, what happens to them, where their story begins and ends. Every aspect of the story is completely in your hands. It’s your book. All yours. When you work with a publisher, […]

January Roundup: Hot Tweetables from #WU

I think it’s safe to say we’re all psyched to see the end of January, of long dark days and the infamous Polar Vortex. The only thing keeping us warm is the litany of publishing news. This month we saw research proving print sales aren’t decreasing, but remaining steady and growing in some areas, in […]

Flog a Pro: would you turn this bestselling author’s first page?

Trained by reading hundreds of submissions, editors and agents often make their read/not-read decision on the first page. In a customarily formatted book manuscript with chapters starting about 1/3 of the way down the page (double-spaced, 1-inch margins, 12-point type), there are 16 or 17 lines on the first page. The challenge: does this narrative […]