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query-letters-that-rock

Why editors accept or reject query letters

When you submit a query to an editor, the editor will respond in one of three ways: yes, no, maybe. The editor says “yes” for these four reasons: Your idea your article appeals to her publication’s audience. That publication could be an off- or online magazine, newspaper or newsletter, among others. Your idea is solid. It has depth, scope and significance. Your writing is stellar. It’s engaging and succinct and, as should go without saying, […]

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Turning the mind inside out - funny quotes about writing, writers and life

Funny quotes by and about writers, writing and life

The beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon. —Robert Cromier Always be nice to those younger than you, because they are the ones who will be writing about you — Cyril Connolly From the moment I picked up your book until I laid it down, I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it. — Groucho Marx Be careful […]

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Previous jobs of writers, from Beth Mende Conny

Previous jobs of writers

While you may dream of writing for a living, you likely will have to make a living in order to write, at least initially. So it was for me: babysitter, waitress, green house attendant, dental assistant, typist, community organizer, office temp and teaching assistant. Eventually, I got where I wanted to go, only to realize how much work it takes to remain there. Writing is work. Which is why I prefer having written. But that’s […]

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SEO for authors

Facebook link roundup

Here’s a recap of some great Web links I’ve posted on Facebook. New ones go up every Thursday, so “Like” Write Directions. And don’t forget to subscribe to Write Directions’ monthly newsletter, which also lists resources for writers, in addition to original articles, publishing info, inspirational quotations, etc. SEO for Authors Optimize your content and master the largest search engine in the world. Photo: shutterstock; as viewed on thebookdesigner.com. Common Errors in English Usage Excellent […]

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Writer's take comfort, by Beth Mende Conny

Writers take comfort: Rejection may mean you’re on the right track

Rejection is rough stuff for writers. You spend months or years working on a book, only to find few takers among the powers-that-be. (Aside: I believe YOU are the ultimate power-that-be, which is why I am a huge fan of self-publishing.) If it helps any, you are in good company. Here’s an excerpted list of famous authors who have their share of battle scars. Although this information appears on various sites, here’s the one I […]

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Tax advice for writers

Taxes and writers

Writing is a business. Businesses pay taxes and claim deductions. Legitimate ones. As a writer, you’ve got to prove to the IRS that you take writing seriously. That means that you are not a hobbyist and that you can justify expenses because you have created a paper trail of receipts, contracts, invoices and the like. The following article excerpt is one of the best summaries I’ve read about writers and taxes. Even if you don’t […]

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Bizarre word groupings (that make sense)

Bizarre word groupings (that make sense)

I found this list while cleaning out my files. Interesting how opposing words and concepts make sense when grouped together, even when they don’t make sense. (Does that make sense?) Act naturally Found missing Resident alien Advanced BASIC Genuine imitation Good grief Same difference Almost exactly Alone together Silent scream Living dead Small crowd Soft rock Butt Head New classic Sweet sorrow Childproof Synthetic natural gas Taped live Clearly misunderstood Peace force Extinct Life Plastic […]

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Heaven or Hell? A writer joke

Heaven or hell?

A writer died and was given the option of going to heaven or hell. She decided to check out each place first. As the writer descended into the fiery pits, she saw row upon row of writers chained to their desks in a steaming sweatshop. As they worked, they were repeatedly whipped with thorny lashes. “Oh my,” said the writer. “Let me see heaven now.” A few moments later, as she ascended into heaven, she saw rows of […]

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A contest you hope never to win

2015 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest winners — A contest you hope never to win (in real-life, at least)

For your enjoyment, truly awful opening paragraphs of books, courtesy of the 2015 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest, sponsored by the English Department at San Jose (CA) State University. Edward George Bulwer-Lytton was a minor Victorian novelist. This annual contest began in 1983, and you can read all winning submissions at the site. Here are some of my favorite 2015 winners. I knew that dame was damaged goods when she first sauntered in, and I don’t mean […]

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quill

Facebook link roundup

Here’s a recap of some great Web links I’ve posted on Facebook. New ones go up every Tuesday, so “Like” Write Directions. And don’t forget to subscribe to Write Directions’ monthly newsletter, which also lists resources for writers, in addition to original articles, publishing info, inspirational quotations, etc. Quill What types of bird feathers make the best quills? In what century were quills first used? What invention marked their downfall? Get those answers and more […]

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