February 2014 Issue
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Workshops Starting March 13th
- Creative Writing 101
- Query Letter in 14 Days
- Essentials of Science Fiction & Fantasy
- The Art of Storytelling 102
- Essentials of Mystery Writing
- Grammar & Mechanics
- Advanced Poetry
Workshops Starting March 20th
- Creative Writing 101
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Author Archives: Jessica Strawser
In this online companion piece, Chuck Wendig gives a more in-depth description of his own evolution as a hybrid author. Read more
Chris Bohjalian moves through the world as a writer. His honest answer to that quintessential question Where do you get your ideas? could be summed up in one word: everywhere. His novels have been born from a dinner party, a wartime diary, a homeless man’s photography, and more than one fortuitous bike ride, though it’s not unusual for those ideas to percolate for years before they start to take form. And just as he might not have a defining moment when a story begins, he doesn’t keep the world at bay once he starts writing, either. In fact, he invites it in—often stopping mid-scene to go in search of new inspiration through hands-on research. Read more
One of the most entertaining links I stumbled upon this week was a Biblioklept compilation of 1-star reviews on Amazon for the classic Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. Here are a few choice excerpts: “The … Read more
I’m always surprised and humbled by the gracious notes I receive from readers about my Editor’s Letters—but no letter in recent memory has drawn as much of a response as the one … Read more
Ever start to get the feeling that the job description of your average bestselling author can seem kind of one-size-fits-all? Something like this, perhaps: Ideal candidates will have the precisely right combination … Read more
When Kimberla Lawson Roby didn’t have any luck convincing the publishing gatekeepers to take a chance on her, she took a chance on herself. She self-published in the ’90s, before it was fashionable—or affordable—to do so, and cracked the Essence magazine bestseller list on her own. That got their attention. Read more
We asked, you answered. Real writers share the small steps in their writing lives that had a big impact on their careers. Read more
One of the things I love most about working with writers is that so many of them are unflinchingly generous with their time, words and wisdom. So when I was recently approached … Read more
In peaceful Kabul, Afghanistan, many years ago, there was a young boy who, like most young boys, loved his family, loved his country, and loved great stories. He was taken by his … Read more
Perhaps because I’m in the process of revising a novel manuscript myself, the advice in the May/June 2013 Writer’s Digest Guide to Pain-Free Revision really resonated with me as I pieced it … Read more
Ask any writer—at any level—what writing program he or she would most like to get a glimpse inside of, and chances are the answer will be the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. The first … Read more
Few questions inherent to the writing process spark as much passionate back and forth among writers as this: To outline, or not to outline? In my years as editor of Writer’s Digest … Read more
With the newsstand release of every new edition of Writer’s Digest magazine, I typically share a few of the best tips relating to the issue’s cover theme here. But in compiling our … Read more
Even before Quentin Tarantino proclaimed in his Academy Award acceptance speech for Best Original Screenplay (Django Unchained) that this would “be the writers’ year,” it was impossible not to notice all the … Read more
It’s said that in life, there are two types of people: those who look at the glass as half empty, and those who see it as half full. But for those of … Read more
Whenever I pull out my camera, my 1-year-old will invariably stop whatever he was doing that prompted me to snap a photo. Is he already perceptive enough, on some level, to become … Read more
Ideas are everywhere. It’s what we do with them that matters. The latest issue of Writer’s Digest is dubbed The Big Idea Issue—and we’ve filled it with clever tips and simple strategies … Read more
Have you ever wished you could get advice on your writing life, your pursuit of publication, and everything in between, from an expert source would tell it to you straight, with good … Read more
For some writers, a day job is a means to an end—and something they dream of one day quitting to pursue a dream of writing full time. (So much so that here … Read more
Even if you’ve done your homework and prepared your query letter and other submission materials by the book, the task of finding out everything you really want to know about how to … Read more
What does it really take to be the bestselling crime writer in the world? The mastermind shares all the gory details. Read more
Thanks to everyone who commented on my post about ways to Make Your Writing Time Matter. Sure, finding time to write (and to write well) can be a frustrating struggle, but it’s … Read more
The secret to Adriana Trigiani’s success begins with an old family recipe: quality ingredients, attention to detail, and good old-fashioned hard work. Read more
Who hasn’t daydreamed about what we could produce if only we had more time? More time to write; more time to feel inspired; more time to read; more time to devote to … Read more
Sometimes it takes a test of guts to find out why it’s worth pushing yourself to extremes for the sake of a good story. Read more