Good Resources for Publishing and Writing

General Publishing

Want to get a handle on what’s going on in publishing?

Publishers Weekly: The venerable publishing magazine has a ton of free content on its website, including Shelftalker, a children’s books blog.

Shelf Awareness: More industry stuff, plus reviews.

Publishers Marketplace: Insiders love the free daily Publishers Lunch email newsletter, which has daily deal reports, though I also think this kind of thing can drive you crazy.

Literary Agents Blogs

Agents and blogging go together like cake and frosting. Agents are pretty frank about what they’re looking for—and what they’re not and shed a lot of insights onto how the ever-changing industry works. (Deconstructs and reconstructs query letters; helps writers figure out what works and what doesn’t). (This blog is no longer updated but it is one of my favorites and its fabulous and pithy advice is still relevant).

Not Agent Blogs, But Still Helpful

Searching for Agents

When I was looking for agents, I used a book, Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors and Literary Agents. The problem with books is that a lot of agents don’t list in them, and also, they can become out-of-date pretty fast. Online seems to be the way to go. Here are a couple of sites that list agents. BTW, an agent who wants money to read your work is NOT A LEGITIMATE AGENT!

But, wait, I want to learn to write better first.

Set up a critique group: In which you get a bunch of writers together and workshop one another’s work. 

If you want something more structured, why not take a class? Look for one in your community, or think about an online class. Mediabistro offers a plethora of online classes and in-person (in major cities) on every writing subject and genre under the sun. Full disclosure: I used to teach a YA novel class there and I’ve seen students get results.

writingLauren Walters