Writing characters with mental illnesses can be a challenge. Authors must do some amount of research to be sure they’re representing the experience in a compassionate, honest, and believable way. Here are five things to keep in mind when writing mental illness. 1. Avoid a magical recovery Books and movies about mental illness often end the same … Continue reading 4 pitfalls to avoid when writing about mental illness
The present tense is a controversial subject among writers. You’ll hear people who love it and people who vow never to read anything written with it. If you write present tense, however, you’re not keeping bad company. Haruki Murakami, John Updike, and Margaret Atwood have all written wonderfully in present tense. They’re not the only … Continue reading Should writers use the present tense?
Welcome to the third part of my series of articles on literary agents. Over the last few weeks I've talked about finding literary agents and researching them. Once you've got a few likely names, it's time to write that query. Here is a very basic overview of the six steps to a successful query for your … Continue reading How to write a query in six easy steps
Now that you’ve read the first post in this series about querying literary agents and gone through the databases I mentioned, it’s time to take that list of likely names and get to know each one better. Here are a few places to start... Agency website: The literary agent’s agency website is the place to … Continue reading How to research a literary agent
If the ink is dry on the page and your book is ready to step out into the cold, cold world of publishing, you’ll need to consider which publishing path to take. For some paths, a literary agent is a helpful and/or necessary ally. Finding the right literary agent and sending that perfect query is … Continue reading How to find a literary agent
A few years ago, I went to the 8th Annual National Latino Writers’ Conference, held at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque NM. It was a wonderful experience, and one I’d love to do again. It gave me an opportunity to meet other writers, celebrate my heritage, and learn about publishing. As far as … Continue reading Pros, cons, and tips for attending a small writer’s conference
There comes a moment in the creative process when one set of eyes isn’t enough, and you need to find someone to critique your work. At the same time, you’ll probably need to do some critiquing of your own, either to reciprocate or just to improve your own skills. Here are some tips on how … Continue reading How to critique a story (and get some eyes on yours)