R E S O U R C E S
My goal as a writer is first to tell compelling stories, and second to help others trying to do the same. So when I find great resources that have helped me grow as a writer, I want to share them. Here are some resources by others that I love:
For Young Writers
Are you a young writer who just wants to know more about how to become an author? This website provides an excellent breakdown of "what's what" in the publishing world. (A sincere thanks to a young writer named Amelia, who alerted me to this GREAT resource!)
Books About Writing Books
These are just a few titles of books about the actual art of writing that have really helped me up my game. They are quick reads with great examples that are easy to understand and apply to your work!
Story Genius by Lisa Cron
The Anatomy of a Story by John Truby
The Magic Words: Writing Great Books for Children and Young Adults by Cheryl B. Klein
Pub Rants – Created by Kristin Nelson of Nelson Literary Agency, this blog serves up a timely and honest discussion about some of the most prevalent questions an aspiring writer wants/needs to know.
Query Shark – For those struggling with the dreaded query letter, this is a trove of knowledge. Created by Janet Reid (a.k.a. the Query Shark) of New Leaf Literary & Media, this blog literally tears apart query letters…to make them amazing!
Print Run Podcast – Hosted by two literary agents, Erik Hane and Laura Zats of Red Sofa Literary, this podcast covers topical events in the publishing and literary community in a refreshingly honest way. Additionally, for $3 to $8, you can subscribe to their secret content episodes where they do live critiques of synopses, pitches, and query letters. They also take questions!
Writing Excuses – This podcast is perfect for a quick commute to work. In fifteen minutes or less, a panel of writers discuss different elements of the writing craft in a succinct and helpful way.
Write or Die Podcast – Hosted by authors Claribel Ortega and Kat Cho, this podcast talks about the real journeys of writers, particularly from marginalized backgrounds. So often we hear the overnight success stories; this podcast has really funny, honest discussions about what it takes to be traditionally published.
Hosted by author Sarah Enni, First Draft Pod interviews storytellers about how their art informs their lives, their unique perspectives on the creative process, and provides more transparency about the professional side of artistic endeavors.
For a comprehensive schedule of pitch events happen, I recommend iWriterly’s schedule found here. Be sure to visit each event’s official website for accurate information about rules and guidelines that may change each year.
Open to: Middle Grade, Young Adult, Adult
Probably the most well-known pitching event, #PitchWars is a writing event created by author Brenda Drake in which aspiring/unpublished authors may choose a Pitch Wars mentor to workshop their manuscript with for several months. Then, during an agent showcase, participating agents may request partial or full manuscripts to consider representing. Check the Pitch Wars website for an up-to-date calendar.
Open to: Middle Grade, Young Adult, Adult
While Pit Mad is not the same thing as Pitch Wars, they are associated with each other and facilitated by the same website and team. Four times a year, aspiring authors may "pitch" their book in a 280-character tweet. If literary agents "Like" the tweet, you may submit your materials to them, sometimes with special or more expedient consideration.
Open to: Middle Grade, Young Adult, Adult & Visual Artists
Created by literary agent Beth Phelan of Gallt & Zacker Literary in 2016, this twitter pitch contest is for writers from traditionally-marginalized backgrounds. Writers may tweet their manuscript’s pitch, and if a participating agent “Likes” the tweet, they can submit their manuscript and sometimes get special consideration they wouldn’t get through traditional querying (i.e., their query letter might get looked at a little faster).
*Note: I found my agent through #DVPit!
Open to: Middle Grade & Young Adult
This program is similar to Pitch Wars in that YA or MG writers may submit their works to a mentor. If they are selected, begin a mentorship to help them workshop and get their work ready for querying. There is no agent showcase at the end of AMM, but the big pro is that there’s no time limit; it’s an amazing way to make a writer friend and find a mentor.