Thursday, June 19, 2014

What NOT to say to an editor or agent

According to one source, about 80 percent of all Americans say they want to write a book. Among that number, most will never write the first word. From among those who do, most either never finish, or don’t know where to turn when they do.

It’s only a tiny subset of those aspiring authors, who will ever get around to pitching their work to an agent or publisher. Are you one of those brave souls? If so, you’ll need to know what to say and – very importantly – what NOT to say. Whether you’re sending a query by email, or conversing over coffee at a writers’ conference, here are a few things that probably won’t help your case:

Thursday, June 12, 2014


The book business is changing. If you have a pulse and possess the skill to read this sentence, you’re probably not surprised to hear that. But the one part that amuses me more than anything, is the vocabulary. Words that meant one thing for a century or more, now mean something very different. Or at least, in the mind of some.

This new nomenclature seems to be driven by self-proclaimed experts who truly believe they have figured out the new order of the publishing world. They have no use for an agent or a proofreader, no interest in real education, and they see a demon behind the door of every traditional publisher who won’t give away the store. But what true credentials do they have, such that anyone should look to them for such important advice? Hard to say.