Links for Aspiring Writers

Lots of people want to write and get published, but often don’t know how to get started.  I don’t purport to know everything there is or have all the good sites bookmarked but here are some that I really like.  This is just a start, I will add other links as I find them.

Miss Snark – Tragically, the great and (sort of) anonymous Miss Snark is no longer blogging, but she kept her site up as a resource to others.  Back in the day, Miss Snark was a New York literary agent who blogged about and for aspiring writers covering every conceivable topic of writing and publishing and editing, and she answered many of her followers’ questions.  There are parts of the archives where she ran writing contests that might be of limited interest to you so just blow past that stuff.  However, I would strongly encourage folks to start at the beginning of her archives and work your way through to the end, even though it will take weeks and weeks of effort.  The amount of worthwhile information Miss Snark provided before she gave up the blog is incalculable.

Pub Rants – by Agent Kristen, a “very nice” Midwesterner who is neither anonymous nor no longer blogging.  Agent Kristen keeps her blog pretty up to date and also covers a variety of writing and publishing topics.  I subscribe to her RSS feed.

The Rejecter – She’s another anonymous blogger, a New York literary agent’s assistant who first sees the manuscripts in the ‘slush pile’ and decides whether to turn them over to her boss for further consideration.  She’s the one who threw your hopes and dreams back in the mail with a form rejection attached.  She explains why she rejects various types of manuscripts and gives you yet another inside look into the difficult work of literary agents.

Preditors & Editors – BOOKMARK THIS WEB SITE.  This is an absolute must for writers, especially when it comes to identifying legitimate and not-so-legitimate literary agents and publishers.  There are many con artists out there looking to take advantage of naive, ambitious, and occasionally desperate writers.  This web site can save you a lot of time, energy, heartache and money.

Writer Beware!(r) Blog – According to their web site, “Writer Beware®, a publishing industry watchdog group sponsored by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America with additional support from the Mystery Writers of America, shines a bright light into the dark corners of the shadow-world of literary scams, schemes, and pitfalls. We also provide industry news, advice for writers, and a special focus on the weird and wacky things that happen at the fringes of the publishing world.”  This is another great source for avoiding scammers.

T-Dot Writers Blog – Shameless plug for the Toronto area writer’s Meetup, which I attended for a few years when I first moved here.  I don’t have time for it now with my book project but the organizer who took over is way better than the organizer they had before (me) and she’s really gotten people writing, attending readings, and in general getting up off their arses and becoming the writers they always dreamed they would be! – Kim Hitchens can convert your book to many different e-book formats including Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, Borders Kobo, and Apple iPhone/iPad.  Her prices are quite reasonable and she’s very easy to work with.  She converted Young Republican, Yuppie Princess to Kindle & Nook for me.

Top Ten Great Resources For Aspiring Writers – My guest blog post at Open Book Society. Seriously helpful books and web sites I’ve found that I think help the aspiring writer greatly.

25 Ways To Boost Your Writing Skills – By Open Colleges of Australia. There’s some basic information here (as well as more advanced thinking) for beginner writers. Doing researching, read read read (it’s amazing how many aspiring writers don’t) aim for efficiency and precision and outline your ideas before you start writing.