If you would like an audio version of this post, click here. I did not want to write this post. In fact, I would have skipped the topic altogether if maybe a dozen different people hadn’t asked me to weigh in. I also felt that I was one of only a handful of people who […]Continue Reading
In January, while I was preparing to teach a craft workshop here in Las Vegas, I was happily reading a lovely essay on the comma in the Oregon Quarterly. The essay, titled “For Love of the Comma,” written by Kate Dyer-Seeley, is beautifully done, and as I read, I was thinking of recommending the piece […]Continue Reading
Just when I thought it was safe to get back into the water… I’m editing a lot these days. I only edit short fiction projects. Anthologies, anthology series (Fiction River), the occasional nonfiction book, and some magazines. I’m also consulting with the fine folks at WMG Publishing, because they’ll be handling the contracts for the […]Continue Reading
The letter from the indie writer encapsulated a lot of things that are happening in the field right now, and I thought I’d analyze those. I also figured it was timely, considering this indie writer wasn’t the only writer in the past month who had sent me email about recommendations on their prose from other “more successful” writers.
I don’t know what it is about the beginning of the year that brings out these insecurities. Maybe it’s the fact that many of us use the end of the year for reflection and then try to plan the upcoming year.
What struck me about this indie writer, and the reason I’m using her as an example, is that this incident is ramped up from the usual incidents.Continue Reading
Most writers check their traditional book contracts for the advance, the payout, and the due dates. They don’t look at anything else. Writer after writer, and editor after editor, have told me this.
I always look toward the editing clauses first. Because if they’re ugly, the rest of the contract usually is as well.
This applies to all kinds of writing for traditional markets, especially for nonfiction and short fiction. I’ve seen terrible editing clauses in those contracts, and what’s ironic is that those clauses often seem to be the most innocuous.
What you want is complete control of the content of your work.Continue Reading
I want to support what the Authors Guild is doing here. I really do. I believe this “conversation” needs to commence. Writers—particularly writers of the Take Care of Me school—need to understand that their publishers and their agents are not their friends. Those two entities are in business for themselves and will devise contract terms to benefit them. But…Continue Reading
Writers miss opportunities all the damn time, because writers are hard to reach. I don’t know why they think they need to be hard to reach, but they are.Continue Reading
Because of this blog, I get a lot of e-mails from writers at various stages of their careers. I also receive a lot of links to other blogs, written by publishing industry people here and out of the United States. I have noticed, over time, several patterns in the way that people respond to the […]Continue Reading
Writers believe that all editors are created equal. They also seem to believe that all editors are gods. Greek or Roman gods, gods of myth, gods who are spectacular one day and horrible the next. Not Coyote, necessarily, but Athena one day and Ares a day later. One day brilliant, the next trying to start […]Continue Reading
Recently, the Passive Voice blog pointed out a post on editing by Lynn Price of Behler Publications. Behler Publications is an independent traditional publisher which buys manuscripts and turns them into finished books, distributing them to various book outlets and sending authors royalty statements. Behler has a contractual relationship with its authors. I state all […]Continue Reading