News, Perspectives, and Insights on Writing and Publishing

From the Staff of The Editorial Department

November 25, 2015

Word Play by Peter Farb
An enlightening study of language that's a gold mine for dialogue-conscious novelists

Word Play by Peter Farb may not have been written with novelists in mind, but it’s a smart, funny, and delightfully entertaining book about language and how we use it. And it’s chock full of good insights for writers, especially on the topic of dialogue. One chapter I […]
November 25, 2015

It’s Black Friday. Stay Home and Read!
Recommended books on writing craft from the staff of The Editorial Department

Think about it: you could spend the day battling crowds for the privilege of spending money you may or may not have, but wouldn’t you rather curl up with a good book, a four-legged friend or two, and a mug of something hot? We know we would. But […]
November 13, 2015

What a World Class Chef Can Teach Us About Editing & Publishing

If you’ve never seen Gordon Ramsay in action, think of him as a drill instructor for chefs. His restaurants have earned a total of 16 Michelin stars, he was awarded the OBE, and he’s had eight different television series in the UK and US combined. The guy not […]
November 10, 2015

A Writer’s Motivation: Who Are You Writing For?
Literary agent Adriann Ranta explores tough questions every writer should consider before attempting to publish

I’ve had some really interesting and unique life experiences, and my friends keep encouraging me to write about them. From a market standpoint, is it a better idea to write a memoir, or to use those experiences as inspiration for a novel/work of fiction? I wish I could […]
November 7, 2015

Words That Earn Their Keep

Economists talk about Gresham’s Law—in simple terms, bad money drives out good. When a country goes off the gold or silver standard in favor of paper money, many people hoard gold or silver coins. Which would excite you more, a shoebox full of paper money, or a handful […]
November 5, 2015

Query Questions

I’ve heard it’s pointless to query between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Are there other times of year that are better or worse for agent responses? It’s true that publishing slows way down over the holidays (we’re people with families too!) and during the summer doldrums (we love the […]