Posts Tagged ‘Publishing’

At some point into the Florida Writers Association Conference last weekend in Lake Mary, FL, I began to feel like a talent scout. That young man working on his mystery would be heard from. I was sure of it. A short story writer whose first publication is in the FWA collections book would soon break through that tough publishing wall. You just know it sometimes. The beautiful young woman I pegged in the parking lot on the first day as a writer made top ten in Collections. Later her elevator pitch to me of her first novel was concise and intriguing. An agent at the conference thought so, too, and asked for the manuscript.

One of my short stories made its way to “Slices of Life,” FWA’s collection book for 2010. I got to play like a real author and sign books for people. There are things you don’t know your first time. I soon learned my signature was not always enough. Some wanted something more personal. Here’s where quick thinking and creativity comes in handy even when in shock. I wonder if published authors go to their graves feeling like a fraud or will the feeling pass?

I will let you know soon when “Slices of Live” will be available for order for just $14.95 at www.amazon.com.   If you love short stories and real life characters you will treasure this book.

My friend Joan Levy and I were finalists in the Royal Palm Literary Awards contest. We met last year when I asked to sit by her at the awards banquet and felt like old friends by the time they called her name for a second prize tie in her category. This time both our stories were up for Creative Non-fiction Unpublished awards. I realized I would feel badly if I won and Joan didn’t and she felt the same. We held cold, shaky hands at times, rung our hands at others, praying for a tie between us at any level. The presenter had announced there were more ties than usual. We saw this as a good omen. We only talked of a tie. Someone must have heard us. We did come out even. Neither of us won. Relief came before our feelings of rejection, so I guess that’s good. There is always next year. Perhaps we’ll try for different categories, though, and we do have the satisfaction of knowing we both made it to the top layer.

The workshops were first class with lots of “take aways,” but for real value, meeting other people who relish sitting at a computer rearranging 26 characters into ideas and word pictures for hours is always the high point. I’ll never forget pausing at the door as I entered my first mini-conference a few years ago. I immediately stepped outside and called my husband to say, “There’s a room full of people just like me!”

My only regret was that I chose at one point to attend a serious, well-attended workshop in the huge ball room instead of “Let’s Talk About Sex” in a smaller venue with speaker Laura Parker Castoro I learned later she had them rolling in the aisles. No, not like that. She presented with humor. All in all, I’d rather have had Sex in the Orchid Room.


Read Full Post »

I wasn’t wrong. I had such high hopes for this movie and they were all fulfilled. Food was prominent, of course, but Julie & Julia was about so much more; filling your life with things you love, two romantic relationships and writing/publishing. The writer (and blogger) in me was touched so many times by two writers’ letdowns and triumphs. It was a beautiful movie without a single slow part. If you write–and I know you do–get to this movie. You will be inspired.

This movie gets writers in the gut. Pun intended.

Read Full Post »

HarperCollins has created an unbelievable opportunity for writers to get their work before a respected publisher. In their words, “We want to flush out the brightest, freshest new literature around.” That means YOU. This is your chance to post chapters of that novel languishing in your drawer or the one you will write for NaNoWriMo (after a lot of cleaning up and rewriting). Your novel may be chosen for further review and even publication.  HarperCollins main page issues the invitation below.  The publishing world is changing, sometimes for the better. This is an exciting new opportunity for you writers out there. From HarperCollins website:



Get Read. Get Noticed. Get Published.

authonomyTM is a brand new community site for writers, readers and publishers, conceived and developed by book editors at HarperCollins. We want to flush out the brightest, freshest new literature around – we’re glad you stopped by.

If you’re a writer, authonomy is the place to show your face – and show off your work on the web. Whether you’re unpublished, self-published or just getting started, all you need is a few chapters to start building your profile online, and start connecting with the authonomy community.

And if you’re a reader, blogger publisher or agent, authonomy is for you too. The book world is kept alive by those who search out, digest and spread the word about the best new books – authonomy invites you to join our community, champion the best new writing and build a personal profile that really reflects your tastes, opinions and talent-spotting skills.

The publishing world is changing. One thing’s for sure: whether you’re a reader, writer, agent or publisher, this is an exciting time for books. In our corner of HarperCollins we’ve been given a chance to do something a little different.

We’d really love your help.

Read more at http://www.authonomy.com/about.aspx.


Read Full Post »

How would you like to get more than $150,000 in public money to write your book? I’d go for that. Of course, being the show-off that you are you would probably want to see your book actually published and sitting on the table at Barnes & Nobles. You wouldn’t be satisfied with readers having to make an appointment to sit in an office and read your book. But remember you are getting $150,000 for your six-chapter, 175-page collection of musings and advice. You could live with that, couldn’t you? Florida Senator Mike Haridopolos does not have a hard time with that arrangement. His political musing and advice brought that kind of money from Brevard Community College.
Jack E. Davis, an associate professor in University of Florida’s history department has a problem with Haridopolos making $38,000 a year primarily to write a book. He called the payment “an amount that a talented writer with a literary agent might get from one of the big New York publishing houses as a book advance.”
Haridopolos’ book –uh, manuscript – is described as in insider’s description of the legislative process and campaign advice for prospective political candidates. With the catchy title “History & Processes” the book is jam packed with advice not available elsewhere, such as:

  • “A cell phone will be essential.” So is “a computer with an Internet connection.” Who knew?
  • “This is a tough, expensive and emotionally bruising business.” Expensive? Tell the taxpayers about it.
  • “The candidates who are not strong public speakers can find comfort in the fact that very few people attend public forums, and that most who do attend are in the audience only because they work for a campaign.” All the while, the candidate is able to gain experience and improve his ability to speak publicly, confident that the public is not in fact watching.” On the job training.
  • “Critical stories, or stories the candidate perceives to be critical might appear in any event, but these should rarely be cause for concern. Only candidates hyper-analyze news stories. Unless the story involves real scandal, most people merely glance at it and, in time, forget it.” The voters are working  so hard until sometime in May just to support the government (and politicians) with their taxes that they don’t have time to weed out miscreants in the political arena.


So here is my advice for you writers out there. Forget agents, publishers, self-publishing, etc. Get yourself elected to office and cozy up to a learning institution with a budget.








Read Full Post »