Publishing’s Best-Kept Secret

Monday, October 5, 2015

    When my revisions were complete, and my novel was in my agent’s hands, I got down to the serious business of daydreaming about selling my book. I wondered how long it would take. I tried to picture where I might be when I received the call (for some reason this was always outside of a café or restaurant, when in reality it happened in the women’s locker room…

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My Agent Story: Strength in Numbers

Friday, October 2, 2015

My fellow Debs have done an amazing job this week of demystifying the agent querying process. All have given stellar advice and/or shared their experience. I hope those new to the process are learning that there’s no typical success story, and every “yes” “no” or “maybe” from an agent is the result of a million different factors. That said, there are some particulars about my book that led me to…

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They read the slush pile!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

It was 2007 when I first set out to understand the query process with a manuscript much lighter than what I write now. I looked online for advice, and found mostly angry blogs and chat groups convinced no one read the slush pile. It was all very what’s the point in trying if your mom isn’t Judy Blume? Then I discovered a blog called Miss Snark. Miss Snark was a respected agent blogging…

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Finding an Agent the Old-Fashioned Way: Querying

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Yesterday, Louise gave some of the best advice I’ve read on how to research agents. She suggested going to conferences and events, reading blogs and subscribing to Publishers Marketplace, attending webinars and consulting Twitter. It’s kind of hard to blog about getting an agent after the wealth of spot-on information she gave. Except I didn’t do a single thing she mentioned. Call me a slacker, call me uninformed, but my…

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Fail Big? Succeed Bigger.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The thing I’m most proud of stemmed from my biggest failure. The first book I wrote and finished (before Chasing the Sun) helped me sign with my agent, but didn’t sell. Those were some dark, depressing times for me. After five years of working on that book, I felt like I’d gone so far, but hadn’t really gone anywhere. But there’s this story my brother-in-law once told me, and I remember…

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3 Sane (and 1 Slightly Less Sane) Ways to Get Through a Writing Rut

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Though this week’s topic is how to keep writing when we don’t have time, I have a theory: 95% of the time, “I don’t have time” really means “I’m procrastinating” or “I’m burnt out.” I’ve been there too many times to count. And I’ve gotten out of it in traditional and not-so-traditional ways. 1. Change things up and write by hand. I write the majority of my drafts on a…

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5 Tips for Coping with Black Friday Disasters

Friday, November 29, 2013

Happy post-Thanksgiving, my friends. I hope you had a wonderful day yesterday and are enjoying your leftovers today. (Thanksgiving leftovers are the best.) We’re talking disasters this week, and I’ll tell you what would be a disaster. Me. Today. In a mall. The last time I attempted a shopping spree the day after Thanksgiving — years ago, when Black Friday was mild compared to what it is today — I…

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Veteran Advice from 5 Writers Who’ve Been There

Monday, November 11, 2013

On this Veteran’s Day, let us say thank you to all the service men and women who have served our country and continue to do so. Their families, too—your sacrifices humble us. In honor of the holiday, let’s learn a few things from veterans who’ve gone ahead of us in publishing. Sure, that’s not quite as heroic, but we appreciate veteran authors, too. I asked five published writer friends to teach…

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Deb Elise Refutes Benjaminicus

The worst advice I ever got was never to get a puppy, and never get a dog around Christmas. This advice was from my husband.  I ignored it, and on Christmas Eve nine years ago, my husband and I brought home nine-month-old Riley, our first-born.  You can see him in yesterday’s News Flash. As for bad career advice, the worst I ever got was well-meaning, but wrong.  The giver was…

Monday, September 27, 2010
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Deb Elise Gnaws on Anne Lamott

You know how sometimes something is so overwhelmingly perfect, you just want to bite it? I say this all the time to my daughter.  “You’re so delicious, I just want to bite you!”  Sometimes it’s more specific, like “Look at that face!  I just need to bite that head!”  Or “look at that tushie!  I have to bite that tushie!” I should clarify that my daughter is only six.  At…

Monday, September 20, 2010
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