News, Perspectives, and Insights on Writing and Publishing

From the Staff of The Editorial Department

July 18, 2016

Coming Out of the Fanfiction Closet
Part One: The fanfiction writer

Remember all the furor about E.L. James’s bestselling trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey and its unabashed origins in Twilight fanfiction? That series started a healthy debate among writers and fans alike about the concept of fanfiction. Some of us read it, others hate it, and then there’s a number of […]
July 12, 2016

To MFA or Not?
Editor Andrew Hilleman considers the pros and cons of an MFA in fiction writing

When it comes to the question whether or not you should pursue an MFA in creative writing, you’ll get ten different responses from ten different people. One guy will tell you only the big programs—Iowa Writer’s Workshop and its ilk—are worth the effort. The next gal will tell […]
June 20, 2016

Spelling it Out in the Synopsis

Let’s start by getting this out in the open: I’m not what one would call an especially fantasy-savvy reader. I like good stories regardless of the genre, but when my co-workers start throwing around fantasy references during our chats, I more often than not have to quickly google […]
May 24, 2016

The Writer’s Secret Weapon: The Power of What You Leave Out
Editor Renni Browne explores the value of what's left unsaid in good storytelling

Here’s an excerpt from a writing contest entry where a man is driving to San Diego with the servant girl he’s just given a Rolex watch—a girl who gave him something he valued much more: Amir’s assignment had been to gain access to Bonnie Becker’s house, using Marie’s position as […]
May 19, 2016

The Best Books on Writing Ever!
Picks from our editors and staff

There are grillions of books on this subject out there, ranging from “duh!” to “wow.” Because you’re our peeps and we don’t want you to waste your time with the former, our staff has put together a short list of the latter. We’ve included links to make it […]
May 10, 2016
publishing glossary cover image

Publishing Glossary
A curated list of the industry terms and phrases aspiring and professional writers need to know

Language is power, and to that end we at The Editorial Department have come up with a glossary of commonly-used terms and abbreviations in the book publishing industry. This is a quick, handy guide (in no particular order) to many of the terms that writers will come across […]