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Dennis Lehane

The author of
The Given Day



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For more author interviews, please visit our interviews section.

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Thrity Umrigar on what writing has taught her.

  Dispatches From The Publishing Front

You Might Be an Editor If...
by Erin Brown

    Editor's Blog
by Bill Kenower

If you watch the tickers at the bottom of CNN, MSNBC, and FOX and yell at the screen, “It’s ‘Obama campaigns in Canton, Ohio, in front of 30,000’ not ‘Obama campaigns in Canton, Ohio in front of 30,000!!!!’ God, can’t you people hire someone that knows about comma placement? Sheesh!”...you might be an editor. 

If your boss asks you to read the 500-page manuscript he just received in the next four hours and report back about whether he should buy it, at what advance, and to make sure that at least ten colleagues read and concur in the same amount of time...you might be an editor.  

If every neighbor, relative, casual acquaintance, and random person on the street who finds out your profession asks you to read and comment on the 200,000-word memoir they’ve been writing for the past twenty years...you might be an editor. more...

    Writers can develop proprietary feelings around words, up to and including wanting the last one. No one wants to be the bore at the party, hogging the airwaves until the room is pummeled into exhaustion because we just have one . . . more . . . thing . . . to say—but this is merely an example of the best intentions leading to the worst results. The best intentions in this case being to leave your audience better than where you found them. That’s our job as writers, after all: To take readers on a journey, however small, that leads them someplace better. 

As I wrote in an earlier column, we are, however, necessarily powerless in determining where exactly it is our readers decide to travel through our work—but this all to the good. Actually, not only is it good, it’s the best arrangement possible. Why? Because it’s proof that—in all that really matters in the world to you—you will always, always, always have the last word. more...

  Book Reviews       Articles  
  Editor's Pick: Get Known Before the Book Deal
reviewed by
Jeff Ayers
    That's Not What You Are:
The Kindest Words
by Jennifer Paros

The scary world of publishing continues to be a hard mountain to climb for a lot of people, and Christina Katz breaks down the little details and supplies the equipment necessary to reach the peak.  Agents want to know your “platform,” or the ways you are visible to readers interested in what you are writing about. More and more, fledgling writers need to have developed a successful platform before they even approach someone to represent them.  How is that possible?  more...




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Years ago, I was in art school and the art department was having a Juried Show in which students submit pieces by hanging them in the hallway and having a professional artist selects the “winners” for display.  I was, at the time, frightened of this idea and hadn’t ever chosen to submit anything for consideration until the day I made a painting in class that my professor suggested I enter.

Although I was pleased about the positive attention, my insecure self, inclined to hiding, was not so sure about the opportunity.  Waves of anxiety rushed through me as I worked, with my teacher, to prepare the painting for display.  It was a medium-sized painting on a wooden board.  more...


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