Posted by: Kerry Gans | May 30, 2013

Top Picks Thursday 05-30-2013

We hope everyone enjoyed their Memorial Day weekend, and we would like to take a moment to thank all who have served our country and remember those who gave their lives that ours might be free.

Good news for those in the Bryn Mawr, PA, area! A new independent bookstore, Main Point Books, has opened!

An important post that every author should read: Rocky Wood explains how Facebook has deleted the Facebook page for his graphic novel WITCH HUNTS without explanation or recourse.

In a powerful piece, Kameron Hurley challenges anyone writing about women to change the narrative of women in history by writing the truth.

Pearl S. Buck has a new book coming out in October—a 40-year-old manuscript of hers recently found in storage.

On the opposite extremes of life and death, Becky Tuch delves into the financial and time reality of being a writer-parent, while Iain Banks updates his fans on his cancer and other things.

In library news, David Lee King recaps where the Big Six publishers stand in regards to library ebook lending, and a New York City librarian uses the “Tilda Swinton In A Box” method to raise awareness of budget cuts.


Jane Lebak says authors need to signpost their book’s direction early on so readers know why they’re reading—and what they should care about. Meanwhile, Leila Austin examines the tricky art of how much to reveal and when in your story.

Author and psychologist Sarah Fine continues her series on character trauma by exploring how vulnerable your character is and when trauma doesn’t look like trauma.

Are you a woman writing a male character? Lynn Rush has 5 easy tips to writing the male point of view. No matter the gender, Tim Kane shows us the tricks to getting interior monologue right.

A story is nothing without tension. Janet Reid gives us her key to building tension, and Stavros Halvatis lays out how to increase tension in your story.

Kristin Lamb reminds us that entropy is real and authors’ careers need daily attention; Kat Howard compares writing to learning how to walk; and Jennifer Malone tells us the real reason you need an elevator pitch.


The big news this week is Amazon’s Kindle Worlds—the rise of licensed, for-sale fan fiction. Mixed feelings abound. Jami Gold wonders if Kindle Worlds is a good idea, and Chuck Wendig waxes philosophical wondering whether Kindle Worlds will blur the line between canonical and non-canonical works in a series.

Kristen Lamb lays out 5 Steve-Jobs-inspired tips for being a successful author, while Sneed Collard reminds us that we are not required to sign bad contracts.

If you’re self-published (or planning to be), Kelsye Nelson lays out 3 budgets for self-publishing a book, and Tobias Buckell takes a rational look at real self-publishing success data.

If you are looking to take the traditional route, agent Rachelle Gardner has provided a handy guide to the archives on her site and agent Janet Reid provides 20 tips for query letter writing.

Once you’ve read them, check out agents Emily Keyes (seeking MG novels) at the L. Perkins Agency and Rachael Dugas (seeking women’s fiction, romance, paranormal, mystery, YA, or MG) of Talcott Notch Literary.

With the rise of the Internet, video has become a powerful, if often overlooked, promotional tool. SCBWI provides several ways to approach using a video as an effective promotional tool.

Speaking of social media, Lisa Hall-Wilson examines 6 reasons why Facebook isn’t working for you as an author; Sarah Pinneo outlines the mechanics of Goodreads; and Marcy Kennedy lists 6 reasons Google+ is good for authors.


Here are 25 signs you’re addicted to books—and a 26th might be if you know the original titles of classic books. Anyone want to guess what classic was supposed to be titled “Something That Happened”?

While feeding your book addiction, you can feed your taste buds with these famous cocktails from literature.

Ernest Hemingway’s reading list for a young writer. How many have you read?

Find Shakespeare confusing? New Shakespeare apps will guide students through his major plays—in the meantime, you can also read them for free.

Got Shakespeare down pat? How aboute a vast collectioun of Middel Englisshe textes onlyne for fre?

And today we end with a sweet publishing story: two little girls, a lost notebook, a determined Wal-Mart employee, and a publisher.

That’s it for this week—and for May! See you in June!

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