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Writer Beware! How to spot a Scam!

Tales From the Underground

I am on the call list for Thomas Nelson/Zondervan! They call me every few months, begging me to sign up with them. It’s true!

In fact, they’re not the only one. Another publishing company has been e-mailing contracts to me, making offers and promising success. The only problem is, they haven’t seen my book. If you think there’s a catch, you’re right. Read on…

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Six tips for engaging readers within two seconds: The Hook in fiction and memoir

Kobo Writing Life

By Paula Berinstein

We all know that if we don’t capture reader attention within a few seconds, we might as well kiss the sale of our work goodbye. That’s why, unless you’re Terry Pratchett (Discworld) or Suzanne Collins (The Hunger Games), you need a real grabber to open your story.

The secret to writing great hooks is to infuse them with possibility and add a dash of spice. Here are six tips to help you engage readers in just one sentence.

Techniques for writing great hooks

  1. Foreshadow. Imply that a change is coming.
  2. Raise questions in the reader’s mind. Your first few sentences should cause us to ask questions. What is going on here? How did he get into that situation? Give us enough answers to keep us from getting lost, but keep us guessing.
  3. Start in medias res (in the middle of things). Jump right…

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Opinion: To Tweet or Not to Tweet? Is Twitter Worthwhile for Self-published Authors?

Just Can't Help Writing

I’ve heard varied reports on using Twitter to promote books. Is Anna’s process the best to follow? How do you use Twitter?

Swedish indie author Anna Belfrage reports on her trial to see whether Twitter can sell self-published books and queries whether the return justifies the

Source: Opinion: To Tweet or Not to Tweet? Does Twitter Worthwhile for Self-published Authors?

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7 Lessons I Wish Someone Had Taught Me Before I Started Writing

Warning: a few bad words but good writing lessons.

Sacha Black

lessons learntWhen I first started writing, I was worse than a kid in a toy store. I wanted it ALL…NOW. I was desperate to be ‘good’ at writing. I didn’t want to just ‘be’ a writer, I wanted to Stephen King that shit.

I was deluded. Not because of my dream, but because I was unconsciously incompetent!

I didn’t know what I didn’t know. Which frankly, at that point, was less than fuck all. So I set about rampaging my way through everything that had even the faintest whiff of ‘writing tips’ attached to it.

The problem was, I got overwhelmed, saturated with conflicting advice and utterly bewildered as to which direction to go in. I didn’t know what to learn or how to learn it.

I realised there was no avoiding the fact it really does just take time to develop your writing muscle. However… along the way, I also picked up some pretty nifty tricks that…

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Five Reasons You Can’t Get Your Novel Published – And Why It’s Not Your Fault

This is a good argument for publishing your book independently. It’s one thing to ask writers to jump through hoops. It’s another thing to remove the hoops altogether…

A Writer's Path

No Entry

by Larry Kahaner

             Dear Author:

            Thanks for sending us your manuscript. The plot is unique, the characters are compelling and the writing is top notch. It’s one of the best books we’ve ever read. Unfortunately, it’s not right for us.

            Best Regards, The Publisher

What the…?

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