Featured online class: Eight Weeks, Eight Drafts with Allison Wyss starts March 9.

Loosely Literal: I Want A First-Edition Iliad, or I Want A Divorce

Posted on Fri, Feb 27 2015 9:00 am by Sally Franson

JENNIFER LOPEZ: (As Claire Peterson) This is a first edition? I can’t accept this. This must have cost a fortune.

RYAN GUZMAN: (As Noah Sandborn) It was a buck at a garage sale. One man’s trash...
 —Soundbyte from The Boy Next Door

"According to used books marketplace AbeBooks, since Lopez’s film was released, 'The Iliad, first edition' has been its top search term, ahead of To Kill A Mockingbird. —The Guardian

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Summer Youth Classes: John Green, Jane Austen, and Fandoms

Posted on Thu, Feb 26 2015 9:00 am by Valerie Cabrera

A spotlight on a couple of our awesomely creative and fun classes tailored for blossoming young writers. 

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5 Social Media Tips for Writers

Posted on Wed, Feb 25 2015 9:00 am by Vikki Reich

I’ve spoken with many writers who are reluctant to engage in social media even though they know that, at this point in time, having an online platform is essential to promoting their work. They feel it’s overwhelming—too much information, too fast and from too many sources—and a distraction that takes them from the their writing. Both of these things can be true but if you create your platform with intention and engage only in ways with which you feel comfortable, you will be in control of your life online.

So, how do you do that? Here are five quick tips to guide you.

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Literary Roundup: Defending Free Expression, Teen Publishing, Red House Winner, and a History of YA Lit

Posted on Tue, Feb 24 2015 9:01 am by Chris Jones

Today's roundup focuses on children's and young adult lit in honor of the Loft's CYA Conference (May 1–3, 2015), including defending free expression, teen publishing, the Red House Children's Book winner, and a history of YA.

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Audio Recording for Writers

Posted on Mon, Feb 23 2015 9:00 am by Kathryn Kysar and Steve Kaul

Given the shifting landscape of publication and distribution of books, savvy authors are looking for alternative ways to bring their writing to the public. Professional audio recording can open up new audiences for your writing, make your words come alive for listeners, build your career, and improve your future performances.

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Reading Like a Writer: Heap House and Words that Enact

Posted on Fri, Feb 20 2015 9:00 am by Allison Wyss

Edward Carey's Heap House is a young adult novel about a Victorian trash heap and objects gone wild. It's dark and funny and fascinating. It also contains a heap of words that create, rather than simply describe, an experience of intense fear.

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Dear Diary: The Benefits of Journaling

Posted on Thu, Feb 19 2015 9:00 am by Valerie Cabrera

I used to be embarrassed that I was a “Dear Diary” kind of girl; that I was so typical, writing about boys and parents and school. I’ll read those old journals nowadays and scoff at how whiny I was, but sometimes there will be a naively profound sentence scribbled towards the end of an entry, and I’ll realize that writing in a journal has probably been the one act that has most altered my life, identity, and perspective. Here are three things I’ve personally learned about the benefits of journaling.

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A Descriptive Morning

Posted on Wed, Feb 18 2015 9:00 am by Benjamin Obler

“You see this?” Ray says to Hank, holding up a book-sized brochure with a pumpkin orange cover. “That guy Obler is doing a class on Description this spring.”

Hank dropped into the creaky wooden chair with his favorite sky blue mug, brimming with Kona, at his lips. Hank wore his Carhart hat, and a crow’s foot sprouted on his left temple. “Description, eh?” Hank muttered.

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Literary Roundup: Dream Jobs, Publication Opportunities, Vacation Spots, and Remembering Philip Levine

Posted on Tue, Feb 17 2015 8:54 am by Chris Jones

Today's roundup finds your dream job, discovers upcoming publishing opportunities, plans a vacation, and mourns Philip Levine.

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publish.me: Manuscript Wish List

Posted on Mon, Feb 16 2015 9:00 am by Dawn Frederick

We often discuss what writers and readers want in the book world, in many types of social forums.  We’ve seen the successful trends: from vampires, to zombies, to tear-inducing storylines, and more. However, the one thing that doesn’t necessarily stand out is that agents (who are readers and sometimes writers themselves) have specific interests and tastes in books as well. These preferences will easily translate into the categories and types of books any agent represents. Inherently knowing the books in a category by being avid reader (as an agent) is essential in agent-author relationship.

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