I've been reading some great blogs lately, chock full of tremendous advice for writers. Whether you're published, seeking representation, or just finishing your first manuscript, the blogosphere is ripe with information to help make the journey a little less confusing. Here are some recent highlights:
From Agent Janet Reid, who is flat out hysterical in her bluntness: Things to Skip in a Query Letter
More great query advice from agent Jennifer Jackson in her latest Letters from the Query Wars
Agents are lamenting across the board on their blogs that there's been a huge uptick in new queries in 2009. Make sure you pay close attention to the advice they give out on their blogs every day to make your letter stand out in an ever-crowded pack.
From Author John Scalzi, 10 Things to Remember About Authors
A great blog from uber author Danielle Steel about her writing process, called "Writing." Love her books or hate them, you won't believe how hard she continues to work after more than 100 bestsellers. And, she still composes on a typewriter! She also has a great blog on her fear of flying that I could totally relate to!
Agent Nathan Bransford did a tremendous blog about Sympathetic vs. Unsympathetic Characters last week. This is really worth checking out. If you take nothing else away from it, remember this word: redeemability. You can create the most horrific villain, but there has to be something about him we can relate to.
Finally, as authors we talk a lot about voice and how critical it is that we develop our own voice and let it shine through in our writing. If you struggle with voice and don't read mega best selling author Meg Cabot's Diary, you're really missing out. Her unique voice shines through in every posting. You can't read more than a few entries without getting a clue as to why her books are so successful.
My agent, Kevan Lyon, recently started her own agency with fellow agent Jill Marsal, called Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. Kevan and I were talking about agent blogs, and I told her I still read them all, even though I'm blessed to be represented by her. Why do I still read them when I am happily represented and published? Because I learn something new about the business, about writing, and about how it all works every single day by spending 30 minutes cruising the blogs. It's time very well spent and a worthwhile investment in your writing career. And, it's all free advice! I will continue to post worthwhile postings from time to time.