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Field Trip Friday: January 21, 2011


Image SourceLast Friday, a warning from Janet Reid about a contest from First One Publishing sparked controversy in the comments and over in the related thread at Absolute Writer. John Scalzi also weighed in on the contest's problems, as did Laura Anne Gilman and the Smart Bitches, and Evil Wylie raised the stakes by creating a contest of his own. Cleolinda Jones pointed out her favorite clause in the contest rules, and I'm not sure who has the definitive statement on the whole thing: Maureen Johnson or Stacia Kane (scroll down). By Tuesday, the contest page had disappeared.


- Agent Mary Kole suggests ways to work through a crisis of writing confidence.

- On letting your writing skin its knees and go across the monkey bars, from author Samantha Sotto-Yambao.

- Unsure which point of view to use? Author Janice Hardy can help. She also has a great post on establishing tone.

- Superstar Veronica Roth gives some advice on being a young writer and college student. 

- So you wrote a book. Now what? C.A. Marshall has the run down at DNA Writers.

- Play to your character and voice, not what's edgy and hip, says author Elizabeth Spann Craig (who is also an amazing source of information on Twitter).

- Author Ziggy Kinsella has 8 ways to make your story truly terrifying.

- "Crazy is our common language," says author Kiersten White.

- Eric at Pimp My Novel presents his top ten grammar pet peeves in web comic form. (Sadly I could only take 18 Biebers in a fight.)


- Librarian and Cybils judge Edi Campbell has great resources for finding books by and about people of color.

- Vote for the 2011 Children's Choice Book Award at Teenreads - our own Kody Keplinger is nominated!


- Hearing you should use Twitter and unsure how to start? Nathan Bransford gives you the basics.

- Author Jill Kemerer has three things authors shouldn't talk about on Twitter-- it's not the usual list!

- How can you get more blog followers? Agent Rachelle Gardner has a good list of suggestions. 

- Should you mention your blog in your query? QueryTracker has the answer, as well as tips on how to find out your real number of followers.

Shaq tweets Oprah - "The Snowball Effect of Social Media," from author Jody Hedlund.

- Speaking of conferences, it's almost time for SCBWI New York, and Alice Pope has a steady stream of pre-conference posts, including some advice on critiques from agents and editors.

- All kinds of great marketing advice at Weronika Janczuk's blog, from guest poster Jordana Frankel.

- The Janet Reid explains the difference between a pitch and a query.

- Emailing an agent when another requests a partial is "like emailing an ex-boyfriend with whom you want to get back together when you've gotten an initial email from someone on," explains author Allison Winn Scotch.

- Agent/author Mandy Hubbard explains advances, royalties and other mysteries of getting paid in publishing. As Highway contributor Amanda said, "FINALLY an article on advances, royalties, etc that I totally understood."

- A parents at a Broken Arrow, OK school is trying to ban Lisa McMann's Wake.


- Our girls Pam and Quita are giving away three prize packs and taunting us with a fourth. Go enter!

- Win a copy of DIVERGENT at Coffey, Tea, and Literary!


- "40 Productivity Hacks to Make 2011 Your Best Year Ever" from writer Prerna Malik (via Elizabeth Craig).


Ever wish you could see your favorite character's email inbox? Famous Inboxes has you covered. Here's Snape's:

You can also check out Voldemort's, Gandalf's, Sauron's and more.

Happy Friday!

Kate Hart

Kate is the author of After the Fall, coming January 24, 2017 from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. A former teacher and grant writer, she now owns a treehouse-building business in the Ozarks and hosts the Badass Ladies You Should Know interview series.

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  1. That Snape sheer genius.

    And great summary of the "contest" BS! I partially followed that, but there's a lot of links here I hadn't seen.

  2. lol, loved the last image. It is very creepy indeed.

    Also, thanks for the extra awesome links!

  3. Thank you for compiling all of those links! Wonderful!

  4. Awesome, as always. Especially Snape's inbox. That was epic.

  5. Yay!! Thanks for the shout-out. :)

  6. Thanks for the shout-out! You have a ton of great links here!

  7. seriously -- that inbox is absolutely brilliant.

    as always, incredible round-up by Kate the Great! you allow me be to be lazy on the internet all week long -- I can read it all on Friday.

  8. omg Snape's inbox.
    I don't know where my life can possibly go from here.
    (Also LOL at the Oprah/Shaq tweets)

  9. Oh, man, I am so far behind on my publishing blog reading. Thanks for all the links!

    And that toilet seat...priceless.

  10. "like emailing an ex-boyfriend with whom you want to get back together when you've gotten an initial email from someone on"

    Best. Analogy. Ever. I seriously never understand why people do this (unless an agent specifically asks them to)

  11. That short story link was super-helpful. Thanks!

  12. Holy cow!

    'Thank you for your support. -Voldemort'

    Now, I ask you, does Voldemort send emails? I say no. He must have an administrative assistant. Maybe Wormtail? Nah. Metal hand crushes laptop. Bellatrix. Hmmm...perhaps. Except that she's a complete and utter crazy.

    Nagini...definitely Nagini.

    Fantastic post!

  13. Ah, Field Trip Fridays. The best way to end a week... especially those inboxes. Thanks!

  14. I love the last two messages in Snape's inbox. :)


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Item Reviewed: Field Trip Friday: January 21, 2011 Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Kate Hart