Blake Atwood

If you want to write a book, stop before you start

The calls start innocently enough. “I found you online while searching for an editor. I want to write a book.” Then I’m regaled for a couple of minutes—sometimes much longer than that—about the content of this ethereal, would-be, much-desired future book. But I don’t need to know all that much about the content of your …

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What Happens When an Editor Writes Her First Novel? An Interview with Shayla Raquel on the Launch of “The Suicide Tree”

I believe I “met” Shayla Raquel after being invited to an editors-only Facebook group that she and a co-conspirator launched a few years ago. Since I was just beginning my career as a freelance editor, I relished that group’s insight, camaraderie, and helpfulness. Whenever I felt stuck, I asked that group. The fact that I …

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Why Stephanie Chandler wrote The Nonfiction Book Publishing Plan

I first became aware of the impressive depth and breadth of work that Stephanie Chandler was doing when she was a fellow speaker for a major online event aimed at self-publishers.Interested by her talk, I visited her website and learned of an organization she’d founded: the Nonfiction Authors Association. I’d never heard of it before …

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To Be Read: One Writer's Fight Against His Ridiculous Reading Ambitions (August 2018)

Rather appropriately, Nick Hornby’s The Polysyllabic Spree bookended my time at the God’s Whisper Farm Writers’ Retreat in Radiant, Virginia, in late June of this year. I read his slim volume on both my departing and return flights. The book’s subtitle—which has to be a tagline rather than a subtitle because of its ridiculous yet …

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