Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Morning Pages: 06-27-12



Huffington Post - Ten Tips for Finding a Literary Agent: "So, after years of torturing yourself beyond emotional repair, making several highly unnecessary sacrifices to the gods, and, finally, signing a contract (in blood) entitled Deal with the Devil, you've managed to finish your book. Yay! But here's the funny thing about those esteemed publishers you've had your eye on since carefully crafting your first sentence. They don't give a **** about you! So what's a writer to do? Get your very own literary pimp, that's what. Pimpin' ain't easy, though, so agents don't represent just any Tom, Dick, or Rumplestiltskin. You have to convince them. Shamelessly shake your money-maker in their vicinity. Do whatever it takes to grab their attention and NEVER LET GO."

Ian Sales - What I Learned Self-Publishing My First Novel: "I made sure Adrift on the Sea of Rains was a quality product – a well-made paperback and hardback, with striking cover art, and properly-edited text. None of that is obvious online. The same is true for the quality of the writing. Amazon provides a preview for the Kindle edition, but is that really enough to get an idea of how good the book is? You read the previews for some self-published authors, and the prose is semi-literate. Yet they seem to sell hundreds of copies a day. I suspect it’s the number of books such writers have available which is the chief factor in driving sales."

Courage 2 Create - 5 Simple Ways to Research Your Story: "Whether you’re a planner or a pantser, you know well before the drafting stage what topics you’ll have to study to realistically write your story. If you’ve got a lengthy list, trying to research every item on it will invariably drag out the planning stage and put off the necessary drafting. To avoid this, study only the topics that will enable you to write the bulk of your story. Leave the rest and start drafting. As you write, you’ll come across sections that need more research. Highlight those spots, add the topics to your list, and keep writing. Once the first draft is complete, you can finish your research and tweak the highlighted areas of the manuscript to include what you’ve learned. Prioritizing your research in this way ensures that both the researching and the drafting get done."

Freelance Writing Jobs - 5 Chrome Extensions for Writers: "One of the most difficult aspects of making money from home is the “from home” part. Although this is appealing to most, writers quickly learn that working from home is no easy task. There are many tips available to help a writer stay focused, but the biggest distraction usually isn’t the food in the kitchen or the soap opera that comes on at noon. The biggest distraction is, of course, the computer. The particularly tricky part of this truth is the idea that writers have to work on the computer. In other words, writers need to somehow figure out a way to be productive on the very thing that causes distraction."

Book View Cafe - On Self-Rising Characters: "Many writers craft their main characters – from a casual “this is who they are” rough draft all the way along the spectrum to the detailed checklist, completed with rolled-up attributes and established back stories.  You use what works best for you.  But sometimes, even in the most tightly-prepared cast, a character – often a very important character – will appear 'out of nowhere.' It’s not nowhere – it’s because there’s an empty character-shaped space in the manuscript.  In other words, you’ve already created them, you just haven’t started writing them yet.  You’ve created a scenario where the character will emerge like Athena from the forehead of Zeus, because that’s exactly what is needed at that time and place.  I call those characters 'self-rising characters.'"

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