Author Archives: Chuck Sambuchino

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Literary Agent Sound Off: Query Letter Basics

"Queries are business letters. Agenting is business. Publishing is business. I try to be nice and friendly and funny and all, but the bottom line is that I expect those with whom I work to be professional and take what they’re doing seriously." —Linda Epstein (Jennifer De Chiara Literary)

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The Utility (and Trappings) of the Novel Outline

I’ve been selling books for more than fifteen years and learning to write novels even longer. Of all the author readings and Q&A sessions I’ve hosted (and attended), one of the most common questions among beginning writers, even curious readers, is this: Do you start with an outline? You’ve heard the pros and cons....

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Samuél L. Barrantes

This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers (this installment written by Samuél L. Barrantes, author of SLIM AND THE BEAST) at any stage of their career can talk about writing advice and instruction as well as how they possibly got their book agent — by sharing...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Robin Antalek

GIVEAWAY: Robin is excited to give away a free copy of her newest novel, THE GROWN UPS, to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (Please note that comments may take a...

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How 5 Great Writers Got Started on Their First Books

1. Toni Morrison -- The Spark: A Writing Group. Morrison was a 35-year-old professor at Howard University when she joined a writing group just for fun. It soon became clear that she couldn’t remain in the group unless she actually wrote something, so she began toying with a story based on an African American...

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Writing and Selling Middle Grade Fiction — Jan. 22 Webinar (With Critique) by Agent Jennifer Laughran

In this live webinar, "Writing and Selling Middle Grade Fiction," instructor and literary agent Jennifer Laughran (of Andrea Brown Literary) will talk about what's happening in the exciting Middle Grade market, as well as examine some recently published titles to see what they got right. She'll also talk revision tips and tricks to help...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Caitie Flum of Liza Dawson Associates

Caitie is seeking: Commercial and upmarket fiction with great characters and superb writing, especially historical fiction, mysteries/thrillers of all kinds, magical realism, and book club fiction; historical fiction with unusual perspectives and stories told in a unique way; police procedurals, cozy mysteries, psychological thrillers, and amateur sleuths, especially those with series potential; book club/women’s...

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It’s 2015 — Believe Anything Can Happen in Your Writing Life

My rational mind knows that the odds of these things happening might not be in my favor—and probably a kajillion-to-one for #2—but there’s something very liberating about giving myself permission to be open to the idea that anything can happen. As Alice’s father says, “The only way to achieve the impossible is to believe...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Kirsten Carleton of Waxman Leavell Literary Agency

Kirsten is seeking: Upmarket young adult, speculative, and literary fiction with strong characters and storytelling. She’s particularly interested in novels that bend and blur genres; literary takes on high concept worldbuilding; diverse characters in stories that are not just about diversity; antiheroes she find herself rooting for; stories that introduces her to a new...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Leon Husock of L. Perkins Agency

Leon is seeking: He has a particular interest in science fiction & fantasy, young adult and middle-grade novels filled with strong characters and original premises, but keeps an open mind for anything that catches his eye. He is also looking for historical fiction set in the 20th century, particularly the 1980s or earlier. He...