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#AmWriting

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#AmWriting

#AmWriting with Jess & KJ

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Entertaining, actionable advice on craft, productivity and creativity for writers in all genres, hosted by Jessica Lahey (freelancer, essayist and NYT best-selling author of "The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Children Can Succeed", KJ Dell'Antonia (NYT contributor and former editor; her novel, The Chicken Sisters, debuts in June 2020, How to Be a Happier Parent is available now) and Sarina Bowen (USA today best-selling author of more than 30 romance novels).
 
Let's talk about writers and writing, right here in Sin City. Before we were the Motor City, one of the nicknames we were known by was "Sin City." Maybe that's why we've got so many great stories to tell. Our Windsor-Detroit region is full of inspiring poetry, first rate fiction, outstanding non-fiction, amazing writers, and exciting publishers. At All Write in Sin City, we aim to bring them to you. Check out our shows here, or take a listen wherever you listen to podcasts.
 
This is a podcast for emerging writers, who are looking to improve their work with an aim to having it published, or anyone who would like a behind-the-scenes look at the publishing industry. Your host, Bianca Marais (the author of 'Hum If You Don't Know the Words' and 'If You Want to Make God Laugh') will be interviewing authors, agents, editors and just about anyone and everyone who's involved in bringing a book to market. She's joined by her cohosts, literary agents Carly Watters and CeCe ...
 
Follow along as book launch expert Tim Grahl teaches you the fundamentals of launching a bestselling book. Based on his work with hundreds of authors and launching dozens of top New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and other bestselling books, he will share the insights and step-by-step tactics you can use to launch your own successful book.
 
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show series
 
Can a marriage survive nearly a quarter century of co-writing? I (Jess) present exhibit A on the side of yes, absolutely: illustrator Robbi Behr and writer Matthew Swanson. Robbi and Matthew met in college, have been partners in life and publishing ever since, and they (along with their four kids) are about to embark on their greatest adventure yet…
 
Our guest on this episode has a problem—a good problem, yes. An enviable problem even. One that she herself is delighted to have: she’s sold a non-fiction book on proposal. And now she has to write it. 60,000 words, researched, organized and ready for the editor while also fitting in her day job, raising 3 kids with her partner and all of the other…
 
In today's Books with Hooks, Carly and CeCe are joined by writers, Sally and Katherine, to discuss their query letters and opening pages. We discuss trigger/content warnings in query letters; being specific without being spoiler-y; as well as weaving in emotion. And... wait for it... we actually suggest a prologue! Yes, we do that sometimes! After …
 
A native of Detroit, Jim Daniels is the author of numerous collections of poetry and short stories. He’s also written four produced screenplays, collaborated with photographer Charlee Brodsky on gallery shows and publication projects including the book street, which won the Tillie Olsen Prize, and he has edited or co-edited six anthologies. He curr…
 
Our guest on this episode has a problem—a good problem, yes. An enviable problem even. One that she herself is delighted to have: she’s sold a non-fiction book on proposal. And now she has to write it. 60,000 words, researched, organized and ready for the editor while also fitting in her day job, raising 3 kids with her partner and all of the other…
 
In today's Books with Hooks segment, we have Emmy Nordstrom Higdon from Westwood Creative Artists join us as a guest agent to review submissions not directed at Carly or CeCe. In this episode, Bianca and Emmy discuss authorial voice; jumping right into where the action is; how using appropriate comps can help cut down on a query's word count; inclu…
 
In today's BONUS episode, Bianca chats with Ami J. Sanghvi and Patrick Hogan of Gutslut Press about the top ten reasons why indie presses reject submissions even if the writing is really great. After which Bianca chats with author, Lee Matthew Goldberg, about sharing your drafts with other writers; the writing process when it comes to writing chara…
 
Ricky Tucker is a writer, teacher, and voguer. He's the author of And the Category Is ... New York's Vogue, House, and Ballroom Community (Beacon Press). Sponsor love: West Virginia Wesleyan College's MFA in Creative Writing Social Media: @CNFPod Newsletter: brendanomeara.com Patreon.com/cnfpodBy Brendan O'Meara
 
Hi all! Jess here. I met performer and voice educator Cate Frazier-Neely through a mutual friend earlier this year, at a Sungazer concert. I was at the concert because my son is a massive fan of Sungazer bassist and YouTuber Adam Neely and Cate was there because she’s Adam Neely’s mom. When the topic of conversation turned away from my son’s hero w…
 
Hi all! Jess here. I met performer and voice educator Cate Frazier-Neely through a mutual friend earlier this year, at a Sungazer concert. I was at the concert because my son is a massive fan of Sungazer bassist and YouTuber Adam Neely and Cate was there because she’s Adam Neely’s mom. When the topic of conversation turned away from my son’s hero w…
 
In today's Books with Hooks segment, Liz and Jami join us to discuss their submissions. Carly and CeCe unpack when to put the stakes at the beginning of the query instead of at the end; the Pixar storytelling rules about coincidences; weaving in emotion with explanation to make it more showing than telling; writing a story in first person and then …
 
A retired history teacher and veteran of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, William Toffan lives in Windsor, Ontario, with his wife, Laura, and children Lauren, Heidi, Oksana, and Heather. Published by Biblioasis in the fall of 2020, his first book is Watching the Devil Dance: How a Spree Killer Slipped through the Cracks of the Criminal Justice Sy…
 
Achy Obejas is an author and poet whose latest collection is Boomerang/Bumeran, poems in English and Spanish that aim to be gender-free (tough in Spanish) while addressing immigration, displacment, love, and activism. Social media: @CNFPod, @creativenonfictionpodcast Up to 11 Newsletter: brendanomeara.com Patreon: patreon.com/cnfpod Sponsor love: W…
 
Why can’t I finish my novel? KJ here, and when I saw that heartfelt cry in our Facebook Group, I knew we had to answer. Because finishing is hard, y’all. It’s harder than starting. It’s harder than showing up to the page. There comes a moment in so many projects when the wheels are spinning but the Matchbox car just isn’t going anywhere. Ophir Leha…
 
Why can’t I finish my novel? KJ here, and when I saw that heartfelt cry in our Facebook Group, I knew we had to answer. Because finishing is hard, y’all. It’s harder than starting. It’s harder than showing up to the page. There comes a moment in so many projects when the wheels are spinning but the Matchbox car just isn’t going anywhere. Ophir Leha…
 
In today's Books with Hooks, Carly and CeCe discuss whether publishing is ready for Covid stories yet; using an inciting incident that is super specific, but doesn’t give away any spoilers; the importance of having a great, unique hook and a beautiful first line; why emotion needs to be on the page before description in a tense scene; and how a pro…
 
Jen Winston is the author behind Greedy: Notes from a Bisexual Who Wants Too Much (Atria). She's @jenerous on the socials, and you can keep the conversation going @creativenonfictionpodcast on IG and @CNFPod on Twitter. Sponsor love: West Virg. Wesleyan College's MFA in Creative Writing Patreon love: patreon.com/cnfpod Up-to-11 Newsletter and show …
 
How do I find a writing group and what if they’re mean? That’s a question we get asked a lot, and we always encourage writers to reach out in our Facebook group or boldly throw it out there anywhere else online that you hang out and see what happens. You don’t even have to trade pages to be a writing group. You look for the kind of support and cama…
 
How do I find a writing group and what if they’re mean? That’s a question we get asked a lot, and we always encourage writers to reach out in our Facebook group or boldly throw it out there anywhere else online that you hang out and see what happens. You don’t even have to trade pages to be a writing group. You look for the kind of support and cama…
 
In today's Books with Hooks segment, Melissa and Stephanie join us on the show to have their query letters and opening pages critiqued. Carly and CeCe discuss the importance of hitting current social and class elements; not missing opportunities to let readers know more about the MC by adding in descriptions and reasons behind their choices; when a…
 
Erin Bartels is the award-winning author of We Hope for Better Things, a 2020 Michigan Notable Book, 2020 WFWA Star Award–winner, and a 2019 Christy Award finalist. Other books include The Words between Us, a 2020 Christy Award finalist and 2015 WFWA Rising Star Award–winner, and All That We Carried, released in January 2021. Her short story “This …
 
Kim H. Cross (@kimhcross) is the author of The Stahl House: Case Study House #22: The Making of a Modernist Icon (Chronicle Chroma). She is a best selling author and her work has been featured in The Years' Best Sports Writing and Best American Sports Writing, among many other places. Sponsor: West Virginia Wesleyan College's MFA in Creative Writin…
 
The hardest part about writing a book is … all of it. Or, arguably, whichever part you’re doing. For our guest on this episode, listener Emily Henderson, it’s something like “I know what I want to write about, but I don’t know how. Structuring memoir or non-fiction (or, for that matter, fiction) is hard, y’all. And I think it gets talked about less…
 
The hardest part about writing a book is … all of it. Or, arguably, whichever part you’re doing. For our guest on this episode, listener Emily Henderson, it’s something like “I know what I want to write about, but I don’t know how. Structuring memoir or non-fiction (or, for that matter, fiction) is hard, y’all. And I think it gets talked about less…
 
In today's revamped Books with Hooks segment, Carly and CeCe each tackle two queries that have been directed at them via the new submission process. They also discuss writing your first scene as if it were being filmed; trigger warnings vs. content notes; deciding what to include in the first five pages, and what to put elsewhere in the story. Afte…
 
In today's Books with Hooks segment, Emma joins us on the show to discuss her query and opening pages. Carly and CeCe tackle sparking curiosity; hooking the agent with keywords; repetition with dialogue tags and replacing them with action beats; writing in multiple POVs and making the reader question who’s doing the narrating; as well as homemade p…
 
Jen A. Miller returns after a near-five-year absence from the show to talk about her new e-book about supercharging your freelance career. She's @byJenAMiller on Twitter. Sponsor love: West Virginia Wesleyan College's MFA in Creative Writing and Casualty of Words, a writing podcast for people in a hurry. Social: @CNFPod Patreon: patreon.com/cnfpod …
 
Hello listeners! Jess here. I had the chance to interview one of my former students, Will Morey, about his career as a writer. He has always been talented, and even way back when I knew him in high school English class (actually, since he was eight) he has dreamed of working in movies and television. We talk through his entire career, from a high s…
 
Hello listeners! Jess here. I had the chance to interview one of my former students, Will Morey, about his career as a writer. He has always been talented, and even way back when I knew him in high school English class (actually, since he was eight) he has dreamed of working in movies and television. We talk through his entire career, from a high s…
 
In today's Books with Hooks, Carly and CeCe discuss putting a fresh twist on a popular trope; taking care not to use titles of novels that are already published; how the present tense offers tension and immediacy; not burying the hook in your query letter; not inadvertently dating your work; and stating specifically what obstacles are getting in yo…
 
In today's bonus episode, we have three romance/rom-com authors who join Bianca to discuss all things related to the genre. NYT bestselling Lana Harper discusses her queer rom-com, Payback's a Witch, as well as world-building, character development, her inspiration for the novel, and her change of genre. Sarah Echavarre Smith, author of On Location…
 
Jeannine Ouellette is the author of the memoir The Part That Burns (Split/Lip Press). She can be reached @msjeannineouellette on Instagram and @_elephantrock on Twitter. Show notes and the monthly newsletter are at brendanomeara.com. Social media: @CNFPod on Twitter, @creativenonfictionpodcast on IG Patreon: patreon.com/cnfpod…
 
Querying and submitting is a jungle, campers—and yet if it’s done right, it can not only work out happily in the end, but seem as if it were meant to be. “Meant to be” after a year of additional work, anyway. Mindy Carlson has just signed a 2 book deal with Crooked Lane Books. The first, Her Dying Day, comes out June 7, 2022. I asked her to come on…
 
Querying and submitting is a jungle, campers—and yet if it’s done right, it can not only work out happily in the end, but seem as if it were meant to be. “Meant to be” after a year of additional work, anyway. Mindy Carlson has just signed a 2 book deal with Crooked Lane Books. The first, Her Dying Day, comes out June 7, 2022. I asked her to come on…
 
In today's Books with Hooks segment, we do a lot of brainstorming, which doesn’t necessarily align with the author’s vision for her novel, reminding us all that the author is the one who decides what their story is and isn’t. Carly and CeCe also chat about how editors like unlikely friendship stories; authors not having to give up on manuscripts, b…
 
Margaret Christakos is a widely published award-winning poet, fiction author, critic, and creative writing instructor. Her work has won the ReLit Award for Poetry and the Bliss Carman Award, has been nominated for the Pat Lowther Award twice, and was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award. She was appointed Canada Council Writer in Residence at th…
 
We're constantly trying to move toward being better writers — but how do we make ourselves bulletproof against life? Is one particular system or another the answer... or is it, as we fear, impossible? For show notes, please visit: https://www.sarahwerner.com/the-bulletproof-writer-wn-140/ To support the work I do here at the Write Now podcast, beco…
 
Susan Orlean is the best selling author of The Library Book, Rin Tin Tin, and The Orchid Thief. She's a staff writer for The New Yorker and her latest collection is On Animals. Show notes and newsletter at brendanomeara.com Social Media: @CNFPod on Twitter and @creativenonfictionpodcast on Instagram.…
 
The whole “am I showing, or am I telling” inner debate can be tough in every part of a novel, memoir or nonfiction-with-elements-of-memoir draft. You don’t want to “tell” about the action. You don’t want to “tell” about the setting. And goodness knows you don’t want to “tell” what the character is feeling. Except when you do. Sometimes a little tel…
 
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