More on Querying

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If you want to see your novel published, the querying process is one of the first challenges that you need to deal with effectively. I don’t have the numbers, and the estimates I have read vary so much that it’s difficult to pin the number of queries literary agents receive every day.  I do know for sure they add up to a huge number. Irrespective of this number, the fact remains that the query determines whether your book project will proceed to the next stop or not. Here are a few posts from experts to supplement what I had written some days ago in a post:  “On Querying”. More

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Manreet S. Someshwar’s latest. Also Writers on Writing.

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Manreet Sodhi Someshwar’s latest novel, ” The Hunt for Kohinoor” (Westland, 2013) is slated to be released  in mid-December 2013. As is common these days, you can pre-order this at Flipkart.  This, if I am not mistaken, is a sequel to her earlier book, “The Taj Conspiracy” which was very interesting. I loved her first book, “The Long Walk Home,” which was set in the Punjab at the time of the Partition. My best wishes go out to Manreet. May ” The Hunt For Kohinoor” be a super hit!

Many people have the urge to write and write well. However, not everyone makes the grade. In this context, I liked this blog post by Maria Popova in Brainpickings called, “9 Books on Reading and Writing.” With gems from authors like Ernest Hemingway and Stephen King, this post points you to books that can transform your writing.

A few extracts:

  • Anne Lamott in ” Bird By Bird, A Few Instructions on Writing and Life,”

“Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It’s like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can’t stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.”

  • Stephen King in his classic,  “On Writing:A Memoir of the Craft”

“Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.”

  • Ernest Hemingway in ” Ernest Hemingway On Writing”

” The most essential gift for a good writer is a built-in, shockproof shit detector. This is the writer’s radar and all great writers have had it.”

Survey on Historical Fiction

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Thanks to my long-standing interest in historical fiction I connected with the author, MK Tod. I follow Mary’s tweets @MKTodAuthor and she pointed me to a very interesting survey she has been conducting which seeks to find out what makes historical fiction buffs love this genre. You will find a lot of information on this in her blog A Writer of History. More

Tips for Writers from Mike Wells

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There is no finish line in writing. That’s what makes it so fascinating for me. You can improve all the time, whether you are a novice or a published author. The objective of most writers is to have their stories published. This process is, as you will find out if you haven’t done so already, is a long one and is by no means as easy as it sounds.  Today, I share a few articles that caught my attention on this topic from Mike Wells, in his website/blog Mike Wells Books/The Green Water Blog.  More

“Show or Tell?” : James Thayer

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Have you as a writer felt dissatisfied with the quality of your output? Have you experienced a sense of inadequacy when your writing did not turn to be as great as you would have liked it to be? The chances are that your writing fell flat because you did excessive “telling” and very little “showing.” More

Top Indian Blogs 2012-13

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I am delighted to find ” Writing To Be Read” listed amongst the Top Indian Blogs for 2012-13. This is a listing of 541 best blogs in English about India/by Indians. This blog has given me great pleasure as I share thoughts, experiences and links about books, authors and the craft of writing. This is just the start, there is so much more to be done.

Blogging For Writers

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It has become almost mandatory for writers to have blogs these days. I started my first blog, “Looking At Life,” when I wanted to capture observations and thoughts from my schooldays at The Lawrence School, Lovedale. Later I started “People At Work & Play” my “professional” blog which spoke of careers, people management and the like. Now that I am retired and am full time into writing, I have a writing blog, which is what you are reading. More

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