News, Perspectives, and Insights on Writing and Publishing

From the Staff of The Editorial Department

October 8, 2015

What Agents Want. (To Be Surprised, impressed, and Moved.)

Hello! It’s a huge pleasure to be blogging for The Editorial Department, my first introduction to the publishing industry back when I was but a tiny U of A graduate. Since TED, I’ve moved to New York and landed at Wolf Literary Services, a literary agency that has […]
October 2, 2015

The Mystery Writer’s Toolbox

Questions. Motives. Clues. Red herrings. Villains. Suspense. All of these are elements in any good mystery. And all of them should be elements in your novel—whether it be science fiction, literary fiction, family or historical drama, horror, romance, or something else entirely. Any good story is driven by […]
September 27, 2015

Does Writing Suck? A Favorite TED Author Reflects on the Elusive Pleasures of the Writing Life

I’ve had more than a few interactions like this: Carl: So, what do you do? Me: Well, I like to say I’m a writer, but- Carl: Oh man, I hate writing. I don’t know how you do it. Writing is the worst. Me: Ha, yeah, I know, I’m […]
September 25, 2015

Writing About Writer’s Block

There is probably nothing more frustrating for a writer than encountering the dreaded problem of writer’s block. And the problem shows no prejudice. It is a creative paralysis that hinders the best of us at one time or another. Adages and acknowledgments about the problem run the gambit […]
September 20, 2015

How Not to Get Your Indie Book Inside Barnes & Noble
An indie author tries to get his work on the shelves of the nation’s largest retailer. (In the interest of revenge...)

“Absolutely not!” Those were among the first words of encouragement I heard as I embarked on my quest to have my indie book carried in a major retailer’s store. They were uttered by a Barnes & Noble customer service rep who, after saying I must go through their […]
September 15, 2015

The Editorial Process 101

A Step-by-Step Guide to Readying a Book for Publication These days, it seems everyone wants to self-publish a book. And that is both a tremendous freedom afforded to all who have the desire, and a scary proposition for a market now flooded with books and no process for […]