In November, 2007, the members of the Writers Guild of America (East & West) walked off the job as part of a contract negotiation with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. (AMPTP) That strike was consequential for a variety of reasons. But what caught me at the time, and catches me now, was how prescient that strike was. The writers walked off because, […]
It took me a long time to learn that negotiation is all about strength. If you say, My agent or my lawyer too many times in the middle of a negotiation, the person on the other side of that negotiation won’t want to talk to you. You’re not the one with power.
Recently, someone asked me why Dean and I continue to teach writing workshops. Most established writers don’t, unless they’re asked to address a college class or spend a week at Clarion. Even then, they’re following someone else’s format, and simply putting their spin on it. Dean and I have developed an entire curriculum, both online and in-person, and we continue to add to it. We […]
Writers obsess about how many people they have on their newsletter, whether those names are “good” names, what kind of marketing they should do for those people, what kind of writing they should do because of the newsletter, whether the last marketing campaign brought in “good” names that converted to real dollars, whether five impressions with click-throughs and buys are better than fifty impressions with click-throughs and no buys yet.
If we end up obsessing too much…
It used to be that everyone on the panel would give the same answer to basic questions. On the basic how-to-get published questions, there was only one answer, and it was the same for writer after writer after writer. Now, the basics differ depending on who you talk to. We all agree on craft issues. But when we move to how to get published, writing panels actually get contentious….
Last week, twenty-one professional writers joined me here on the Oregon Coast for an intensive advanced workshop in writing fantasy fiction. I learned a lot, even though I was teaching the class, and I hope to share some of that with you all down the road. The writers were amazingly good. (You can see photos from the workshop on WMG Publishing’s Facebook page. And you can […]
We just finished the anthology workshop, the largest workshop we do in person. Forty-six attendees, eight instructors, seven days, and 250 manuscripts to read and discuss. All of the attendees are professional writers in one capacity or another (technical writers, nonfiction writers, fiction writers), so the manuscript quality was high—often award-quality. Oh, the discussions. Oh, the fights (among the instructors). Oh, the laughter. Yes, we […]
As I got deep into this discoverability series, I promised that I would examine marketing strategies from passive to active. I have to abandon that promise now, because most everything we’ll discuss from here on out will be active. By active, I mean you’ll have to do something—write something, design something, or pay for something—and you’ll have to do it several times. You had to […]
I finished my second novel (as an adult) on the day my best friend from high school gave birth to her second child. My friend called me from the hospital to tell me the great news and then, because she was a sweet woman and because she was from the upper Midwest, she reflexively asked how things were going for me. Even though I am […]
This week, I finished reading a bad book by one of my favorite authors. Well, “finished reading” isn’t accurate. “Paged through the last half” is probably better. The book was astoundingly bad. The author decided to go 50 Shades of Grey on me when she’d never written more than a fade-to-black sex scene before. But that wasn’t the worst. The worst was that her protagonist […]