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Posts Tagged ‘publishing’

  1. 10 Truths About the Time I Almost Gave Up

    October 12, 2014 by Kiersi

    I still can’t believe I got a book deal. (Check out this post for more information.) I don’t mean that metaphorically. I honestly sometimes sit here and don’t actually believe that it happened. That it is happening.

    One thing I want to say to all the writers out there trying to get published, trying to get an agent, trying to finish a novel:

    Don’t. Give. Up.

    I mean it. And believe me—I know what it feels like to hear that from an author who’s getting published. “Yeah, well, that’s all well and good and easy for you to say. You have a book deal.”

    But there’s a reason I sometimes still don’t believe it’s true:

    Truth #1: I almost gave up.

    Truth #2: SECOND CHANCE RANCH is, actually, my second book deal. (Though SHY GIRL AND SHY GUY will still be my first published book.) (more…)

  2. It Takes a Village to Write a Book

    April 9, 2013 by Kiersi

    The Night Circus

    As I move into the critique stage of my current novel, and my August book release finishes up with the editor over at Rain Town, it has become clearer and clearer to me that no single person is responsible for the great books we read and love.

    Today I read a fabulous post, “On Writing and Publishing Paths,” by Erin Morgenstern–author of the seriously delightful, magical, spectacle of a novel The Night Circus. And the takeaway is one that I hope every aspiring writer takes to heart: a manuscript rarely emerges from a writer’s mind a finished product.

    I’ve been on the receiving end of query rejections, form letters and personalized responses alike. “They don’t get it,” is something we’re tempted to think. “They’re blind to my potential.”

    As Erin writes:

    …I got my manuscript to the point where I didn’t know what else it needed and it seemed like the right point to start sending it out. I did. It got requests because I had a query letter that made it sound like it had a plot when it really didn’t. It also got a lot of rejections. (more…)

  3. Film Noir, Dying Genres, and Tic-Tacs

    August 31, 2012 by Kiersi

    A week’s worth of contracting work instead of finishing my query? SO WHAT. This thing is in the bag!


    And it’s Friday.

    I’ve posted about Veronica Mars before (and how it’s the best teen TV show pretty much ever–but I’m not really a Buffy person), but this girl really went the extra distance to talk about the film noir elements of Rob Thomas’s crowning achievement in her article, “VERONICA MARS (Is Smarter Than Everybody).” She also has gathered an impressive collection of snarky Veronica gifs (if you’re into that kind of thing–and you might just be after you see this.)

    GOD, I love smart, sassy girl heroes. And the noir-style detective tale? An untapped YA sub-genre that, to me, seems ripe for the pickin’s.

    And while we’re on the topic of trending (and dying) genres, I read an interesting post this week by literary agent Suzie Townsend called “The Truth About Dead Genres.” She makes a great point: Write the book you want to write, not what you think you should write to stay on top of the market. There’s no way to know what’ll hit and what won’t a few years down the line.

    One last thing: Just in case you weren’t already aware, this is how you eat a tic-tac like a boss. I mean, seriously, why is this not an NBC “The More You Know” ad?

  4. Interview with Kelly Hashway

    June 4, 2012 by Kiersi

    Young adult novelist Kelly Hashway (author of the upcoming Touch of Death, SpencerHill Press January 2013) let me interview her last week about a number of important, burning topics. Most importantly, we talked about why she is so awesome.

    Here is the interview, so you readers and writers out there can glean some of her wisdom, and turn it into prolificness! And, of course, get a sneak peek into the inner workings of a talented wordsmith. I didn’t edit a thing, just for you.

    Me: So, Kelly. You have a YA novel coming out with SpencerHill Press in January of next year, a sequel already slated to released six months later, and a triquel in the works (later she corrected me that, in fact, she had finished a first draft of the final book in the series and was just waiting to be contracted for it).

    Now I know that your first YA book, Touch of Death, is about necromancers. Why did you pick necromancers?

    Kelly: I came up with the idea when I was writing another novel that had to do with the thirteenth sign of the zodiac. He didn’t play a major part in the novel, but when I looked into his story I learned a lesser-known myth about him. It had to do with Medusa. His name is Ophiuchus (K note: I had to look up how to spell this), and he has the ability to bring the dead back to life. I thought that was pretty cool, but necromancer books have been done before—so I wanted to do something a little different. (more…)

  5. Tips for Writing the Perfect Hook

    April 30, 2012 by Kiersi

    Tips for Hooking an Agent or PublisherWilliam Nolan, author of the award-winning dystopian novel Logan’s Run, described the process of editing for Gamma magazine as far back as the 1960s at the Write to Publish 2012 convention this weekend:

    Every Thursday I went into the office to go through the slush pile of manuscript submissions for the magazine. I reached the point where I’d open each box or envelope, slide out the first page, and just read the first couple of paragraphs. That was all the time an author got to impress me and convince me to keep reading.

    With the advent of email submissions, agents and publishers increasingly find their inboxes swamped by unsolicited manuscripts–leaving them even less time to wade through backstories and prologues to get to the action, the theme, the meat. This is true even for query letters. I’ll leave that topic for another day.

    Here are some suggestions I picked up at the Write to Publish conference to help you clean up your manuscript for submission. (more…)

  6. The Road to Publishing

    March 22, 2012 by Kiersi

    Magenta Scribe The road to getting published is long and strenuous, no matter how you go about it–which is why I wrote “The Road to Publishing: Choose Your Own Adventure” on the new writer’s resource website, Magenta Scribe. This introductory post will guide you through some of the advantages and disadvantages of:

    -Traditional publishing

    -Publishing with small and independent publishers


    Of course, I also talk about how to make yourself look professional no matter what, and give a few tips to authors working any of those three venues. I’ll be a contributing author to Magenta Scribe in the future, so look for more from me as KC and I dig into things.

    Good luck! Hope to see you there!

  7. It’s Only the Beginning

    March 11, 2012 by Kiersi

    Concept art for The Devil's Throne Series

    Concept art

    As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I’ve just signed a contract with an independent Portland publisher called RainTown Press for a series of paranormal YA books called The Devil’s Throne. The first book will be worked over from now until June or so, aiming for a Spring 2013 release date. The second book in the series is scheduled for Fall 2013, and the final installment in Fall 2014.

    This is my debut novel–and to have the publisher take it on as a three-book series, well, I’m a pretty lucky girl. I’ll have the opportunity to sketch out an epic, an opera of unexpected twists, turns, and big reveals. That will be awesome. But in some ways, it’s also totally terrifying. I’m glad to have an editor to help me keep track of all the threads, and make sure they tie up neatly at the end. (more…)

  8. Writer Communities and the Power of the Web

    February 4, 2012 by Kiersi

    She Writes Members

    Just a sample of She Writes members and contributors

    If you’re a writer and you’re anything like me, you probably spend a lot of time doubting yourself. Is this novel I’m pouring my soul into really any good? How do I go about getting it published once I’m done? Am I really cut out for this industry after all?

    These are just a few of the reasons I recommend getting involved in an online writers’ community. Sometimes you just need that boost of confidence; someone to read your hook and tell you, “Wow! I can’t wait to read the rest of it!” Other times you need constructive feedback, networking, or just to hear about a successful author’s story of finding an agent and getting an offer for that debut novel. Someone who will make you think, “That could be me.” (more…)

  9. Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest

    January 23, 2012 by Kiersi

    Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest

    Thanks to Erica Dreifus (Monday Markets, Jobs & Opportunities for Writers) for pointing me to the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award competition by If you have a general fiction or YA fiction novel that’s polished up and ready to get noticed, make sure you enter this free contest. But be prepared: the contest requirements are hefty, though not difficult. They’ll want the following information about your entry:

    -A book description and a pitch (still not sure how/if these are different besides the fact that is viewed by the audience, and one is viewed by the internal judges)

    -An excerpt between 3,000 and 5,000 words

    -A bio

    -A short anecdote (if you have one)

    -An author photograph

    Last but not least, they want a full copy of your manuscript for evaluation if you make it to the quarterfinals.

    And the reward? It’s a big one. A publishing deal with Penguin and a $15,000 cash advance. So, with the cost of entry being zilch, why wouldn’t you enter? I certainly did–Fire and Brimstone was packed up and shipped off to the contest first thing this morning, and if I can, I’ll probably enter The School Under the Mountain as well.

  10. Lit Agents, Publishers, and Bears, Oh My!

    January 20, 2012 by Kiersi

    It’s about 11:07 p.m. Argentinian time. The temperature? Upper-90s, at least. Hot enough that sitting inside with the overhead fan whirring full-force and the window wide open isn’t enough to stop the sweat from pouring off my forehead, dripping down my cheeks and ears and neck.

    I told some of my pals on Facebook about this, but I received a response from my fourth literary agent query (first was Andrea Brown Lit Agency, second was the agent who represented Hush, Hush, and the third I can’t even remember). Her name is Alyssa Henkin, with Trident Media Group.

    It’s been over a month since I emailed her back with the full manuscript of Fire and Brimstone (from The Devil’s Throne series) and, as she requested, The School Under the Mountain (a middle-grade adventure/thriller). So maybe all that Argentinian sweat isn’t totally due to the Argentinian heat. (more…)