Posted by: Kerry Gans | August 23, 2018

Top Picks Thursday! For Writers & Readers 08-23-2018

Welcome to this week’s Top Picks Thursday! I am in the midst of back-to-school craziness, and am seeking refuge in the writerly links we have for you this week

Mary Kole is seeking a part-time social media and web marketing associate.

Research shows that teens today spend less time reading, more time on digital media.

Maybe that’s why Kristen Arnett has this jaw-dropping list of things people have asked for at the library circulation desk.

But teens (and adults) can now get books from Walmart’s ebookstore that launched August 21st.

Because we do live in a digital age, copyright infringement has become rampant. Brett Danaher, Michael D. Smith, and Rahul Telang examine copyright enforcement in the digital age: empirical evidence and policy implications.

In this digital age, the world is shrinking and local cultures are being subsumed in the more dominant cultural trends. Helen Brown explains how every two weeks, an entire language is lost.

Are you looking to revive your writing mojo by communing with other writers? Diana Hurwitz lists writers workshops coming in September and October 2018.


Write How-Tos? Betsy Graziani Fasbinder has 5 steps to writing better how-to books.

If you are thinking about writing a series, J. Kathleen Cheney has some tips on baking a series from scratch.

Many stories start with a single idea. Stavros Halvatzis discusses bringing a big story idea to full realization. Some writers struggle to title their works. Clare Langley-Hawthorne shares how to find the right title for your book.

Most authors know there is no one “right” way to write—there’s only what works for you. Janice Hardy shows how to craft outlines that work for you.

There are many elements that go into making a story sparkle. Jenny Hansen tells us how to focus on your story’s DNA, Janice Hardy asks if you have a story with a twist or a twist that thinks it’s a story, and Louise Candlish explains why structure matters when you are writing a novel.

Every word we use, every choice of POV, every decision on description creates our author voice. Jami Gold shows us how to use senses other than sight to “show” and explains that the real power of “showing” is in the context. Dawn Field explores jewel words, crux and flavor words, and everything in between. Characters have distinct voices, too Lori Freeland discusses the ins and outs of internal dialogue, and September C. Fawkes urges us to create a “body language voice” for our characters.

Editing our book is always the final step. Debbie Young lays out the 10 top writing errors and how to avoid them, Tamela Hancock Murray debunks 4 myths about editors, and Juliana Baggott points out that every novel is wildly different when it comes to revision.

Sometimes we make mistakes that hold us back in our career. Derek Murphy shares 10 mistakes he made as a new indie author, Judith Briles wonders if perfection is an art or author sabotage, and Bill Ferris provides a humorous hack’s guide to buying a writing desk.

A writing career comes with a lot of emotion. Margie Lawson asks us to consider who’s in charge of your writing life, K.M. Weiland has 3 thoughts on what to do about writer’s jealousy, and Lesley Vos examines the hidden risks of emotional burnouts in writing.


Author Richard Russo pens a letter warning of tech giants’ move into content—and the algorithms do not favor the writer.

If you are self-published, Joe Biel discusses when and how indie authors should use book distributors, and Emma Darwin explains why your book is (not) your cover.

If you are searching for an agent, Stephanie Elliot has a roundup of 11 authors discussing the road to getting a literary agent. Agent Janet Reid gets a three-fer today with: Memoir, the category that cannot die; Why I hate personalization with a passion; and What “Send 50 pages” really means.

Marketing can make writers crazy. Roz Morris is staging a quiet rebellion against 3 pieces of conventional marketing wisdom when building readerships. Frances Caballo pitches in with 10 great resources writers need to know to make our jobs easier.

Reviews are vital to book sales. Craig Tuch explains how to optimize your book review process for the best reviews and the most value. Helena Halme shows how to change a book’s title without losing reviews, and Elizabeth S. Craig walks us through keeping your reviews after rights revert to you

Amanda J. Evans reminds us that author branding is more than genre, while Rachelle Gardner talks non-fiction platforms.

Blogging can be a great way to stay connected with your readers. Zoe M. McCarthy explores hosting guests on a subject-specific blog—the benefits and how to do quality control. As you gather emails through your blog, Grove Galligan gives top tips for a clean and healthy blog email list.

Blogs are not the only way to reach readers. Kristen Lamb discusses using Twitter to build a powerful brand, and 8 things to avoid doing on Twitter. Frances Caballo shares 10 tips you need for a successful author podcast.


Think mobile devices are recent inventions? Think again. Writers have always loved mobile devices.

Wendy Moffat explores the slyly subversive writing of E.M. Forster.

Check out the weirdest libraries around the world.

Michelle Regalado explains how bookstores calm her anxiety.

Speaking of anxiety, NPR lists the 100 best horror novels and stories as voted by their readers.

Here’s an infographic of things to use as bookmarks if you must step away from the horror.

Writers love their pets. From Chester Himes to Judy Blume, 10 writers and their cats.

That’s it for this week’s Top Picks Thursday! Join us next week for the final Top Picks of the summer!

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