Beyond Categorization, Meaningless Drivel, My Thoughts, Snark Alert

The Society of Abandoned Manuscripts

Transcript from the January 26, 2013 meeting of the Society of Abandoned Manuscripts, Colorado Springs Chapter. Meeting location: Empty warehouse on the lower east side. The one scheduled for demolition 0n Tuesday. In attendance: gallager’s brain – self-proclaimed “literary novel.” Henceforth, “gal.” Bite, Bitte – a vampire romance. You probably think it’s set in Germany. It’s not. Henceforth, “Bitte.” Love Comes to the Loaf’n’Jug at Exit 277 on I-80 – a regional romance. Henceforth, “Loaf.” Harold Nuttersby and the Yellow Fingernails of Magical Thinking – fantasy. To my surprise, not an intentional parody. Henceforth: “Nutter.” Association by Death – “clever…

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Editing, Snark Alert

What To Do When You Get Your Editorial Memo

Ping. An email just arrived. The one you’ve been waiting for. The one you’ve been dreading. The subject line is three words long. Your editorial memo! The exclamation mark almost makes those words seem benign. Cute, even. But you know what the words are hiding. Red ink. Six weeks ago you sent your finished manuscript (the seventh draft, if you don’t count the first five) to your editor. And now it’s back. With notes. Comments. Suggestions. Demands. What’s a writer to do? Here. I’ll help. Step 1: Stare at the email without opening it for at least 10 minutes or…

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Beyond Categorization, Meaningless Drivel, Snark Alert

Totally Believable Publishing Predictions for 2011

My predictions are based on extensive eavesdropping at my local Starbucks. Additional data supplied by that one night when I might have accidentally taken too much cough medicine before bed. 1. Barnes & Noble and Borders will merge after all and call their new stores “Noble Borders.” This will result in the closing of nearly half of existing stores, leaving thousands of bookish employees out of work. In an unrelated story, there will be a significant rise in the literary quality of panhandlers’ signs. 2. Amazon will release a Kindle Reader app for Sony Playstation 3, Microsoft XBOX 360, Nintendo…

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Beyond Categorization, Contests, Self-editing Tips, Snark Alert

Stuff I Made Up Last Minute

One: In Which I Make a Single Point About Dialogue But Don’t Actually Tell You What the Point Is Because It’s So Obvious Even a Non-Writer Could Figure It Out “So it’s Friday and that means I can talk about whatever I want,” said Stephen. “You can talk about whatever you want any day,” interrupted Stephen’s alter-ego, Pedro. “I know that,” interjected Stephen, “but Friday is my day to be especially random.” “Pedro?” queried Pedro. “You named me Pedro? What’s wrong with you?” “Nothing’s wrong with me,” countered Stephen. “Pedro is a fine name. What concerns me is this horribly…

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Meaningless Drivel, Snark Alert, The Publishing Process

Revealing the Hidden Secrets to Publishing Success

Tired of having to jump through all those silly hoops agents and editors keep placing between you and your dream of becoming a published author? After literally minutes of research, I have uncovered 10 secrets that practically guarantee success. Sure, I could keep them to myself, but I’m feeling generous today so I thought I’d share them with you. Study these secrets. Use them wisely. Become hugely successful. Then buy multiple copies of my soon-to-be-released fiction bestseller, The Last Days of the Literary Agent*. It makes a great Festivus gift. Legally change your name to Stephen King. Then write under…

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Beyond Categorization, My Thoughts, Self-editing Tips, Snark Alert

What Your Editor Is Thinking

Ever wonder what your friendly editor is really thinking when she emails or calls to talk about your manuscript? Here’s a handy-dandy guide to help you understand the deeper meaning behind her words.* *** When your editor says: “I really like the basic plot. Nicely done!” Your editor is thinking: “Okay, there are 90,000 words here, so that’s a start. And the story has characters and they do stuff. That’s a good thing, too. But whoa baby there’s a ton of work to do. I’m going to have some long nights with this puppy.” *** When your editor says: “I’m…

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