For Writers

Here you’ll find my blog posts for writers and aspiring authors. More writing & publishing help in the FAQs below.

The Big Choice: Self Publishing VS. Traditional

Writing What You Love

Yes, You CAN Toss That Manuscript

The M Word (that’s right, marketing): 19+ Ways to Market Your Book

For The Love of Shorts

Background Noise & Writing

Your Words Matter (what are you waiting for?)

The Importance of Being Inspired & The Elizabeth Berg Event

A little more about my writing career…

I am the author of several published books and short stories. My debut novel was published traditionally after I spend over two years and sent more than two hundred query letters to literary agents. Despite interest from agents, I refocused, and decided to try submitting directly to small presses. I sent two submissions. The first publisher on my list, Penner Publishing, made me an offer which I accepted. I then went on to self-publish a short story collection, a collaborative anthology of short stories, and a poetry book. I’ve published individual short stories as well. I’m going to be querying soon for my YA fairytale retelling AND my adult fantasy manuscripts.

Writing & Publishing FAQs

Q: Do you do EVERYTHING yourself when it comes to self-publishing?

A: No. I pay for professional editing, and formatting. I’d rather spend my time writing than learning how to do many of the technical things that are required with publishing.

Q: Who do you publish through?

A: I usually use CreateSpace, Kindle Direct Publishing, and sometimes, Smashwords. I’m still working on Ingram, though it’s not as user-friendly.

Q: Do you write every day?

A: No. And I think that’s okay.

Q: I’m thinking of writing a book…can you tell me where to start? Should I outline?

A: Start with an idea you’re passionate about. Gather ideas, images, and anything else to inspire you. Start writing. Write fast, edit slow. I do at least a rough outline, even a paragraph of what I want to happen.

Q: Do you design your own covers?

A: Some of them, yes. Otherwise I recommend designers on, and Harper Skye Designs.

Q: Who is your editor? How do I find an editor?

Dani is my fantastic editor. I recommend getting a recommendation from a fellow writer. You can request sample pages to be edited if you’re looking for an editor. It’s important that you click.

A: Where do you submit your work?

Q: I’ve submitted hundreds of poems, and short stories to numerous literary journals, magazines, and more. You can Google whatever genre you’re writing, and try to find good fits for your work. I like following Calls For Submissions on this site, to start.

Q: How do I write a query letter? Who do I submit my manuscript to?

A: Please do your research. Open your favorite books (that are similar to yours) and find out who the authors’ agents are. Join querytracker to keep track of your submissions. You can get query critiques, or find countless successful examples online. I’d also recommend #MSWL on Twitter for SO many amazing agents and what they’re looking for.

Q: Will you read my story?

A: I can’t at this time, sorry (caveat below). There’s lot of groups that you can join to get Beta Readers, or start a local writing group. If you’re writing about sensitive content that is beyond your experience, I’d suggest hiring sensitivity readers as well.

However, I hope to offer a Pay-It-Forward manuscript/query critique sort of thing soon. Stay tuned!