News, Perspectives, and Insights on Writing and Publishing

From the Staff of The Editorial Department

November 2, 2016

Evaluating Nonfiction: One Editor’s Approach
What can set your nonfiction manuscript up for success... or doom it to the reject pile

Fiction lives or dies by the author’s storytelling and writing skills (and perseverance and some luck). For nonfiction, then, one might assume that likewise, an interesting topic well elucidated will do the job. However, the publishing industry and readers regard nonfiction a bit differently. Subject Matter Publishers generally […]
October 5, 2016

Five Short Steps to the Reject Pile
Keep your book out of the reject pile by avoiding these five common mistakes

Oh, the dreaded reject pile. Often we like to imagine the (probably imaginary) good old days when editors searched for traces of gold in the rough ore of a first draft and worked with the writer to refine it. Recently, an editor at a major publisher offered a […]
September 25, 2016

Authentic Voice
Elements of Craft: One editor's take on an author's technique

  Fiction readers are very demanding creatures. They want their made-up stories to be as close to truth as possible—sort of like vegetarian meat. If they have to pick between two gritty detective novels, one by an ex-cop and the other by an MFA who has always lived […]