Writers' Resources

Before you can hope to be a successful writer--or even a good one--you must read every day and you must write every day. There is simply no shortcut around these facts.

The resources below are not listed as advertisements or endorsements and may not suit your particular need or style. However, they are all easy to access and have proven track records of success in the ever-changing field of publishing.

One of the old standbys of the publishing world is Writers Market. In addition to the website, Writers Market publishes an enormous volume every year that lists names of agents, editors, and publishers, and sometimes what types of literature they are looking for and even their submission processes.

Of the many magazines about dedicated to writing, arguably the most recognizable is Writer's Digest. This magazine provides writing tips, advice from successful writers, and prestigious writing competitions.

The online options are more plentiful, but also more dangerous. An excellent website called Preditors and Editors lists the names and level of reliability of literary agents, attorneys, and freelance editors from the United States and the United Kingdom. Agent Query is a similar website with a flashier interface, and it is also free to use. Finally, Publishers Marketplace is to the publishing industry what the Internet Movie Database is to the film industry. However, with the higher quality comes a subscription fee of $20 per month.

Finally, for a no-nonsense window into the world of publishing, you can read Alan Rinzler's free blog, The Book Deal. Alan got his start as one of the founding members of Rolling Stone, and has edited books by a number of superstar authors such as Toni Morrison, Tom Robbins, Robert Ludlum, and Hunter S. Thompson. In addition to his daily responsibilities as an executive editor at Jossey-Bass Publishing (an imprint of John Wiley & Sons), Alan takes the time to respond to writers who post questions or anecdotes in his blog forum.

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