This week! Books!
First up, I had the good fortune of stopping by the Red Sneaker Writers podcast to talk about advice for the publishing journey and my work as a writing coach and consultant. Give it a listen!
What’s in a pen name? In a world of social media and Google-able everything, I’m getting more questions about the wisdom and utility than ever. Literary agents Jessica Faust and McGowan have some great tips on how writers should go about choosing their pseudonyms and why publishers may ask you to adopt one.
Can you be defamed by a fictional character? Courts will soon decide as Jeffrey Epstein pal Alan Dershowitz is suing TV show “The Good Fight” over a line uttered by a character who, in the show, is Epstein’s former lawyer.
In this time of Black Lives Matter and renewed attention (at least in some circles) on issues of race in America, author William Faulkner is receiving a re-examination with the publication of a new book The Saddest Words: William Faulkner’s Civil War. Two great nuggets from the review in The Atlantic: the, shall we say, rather different Absalom! Absalom! and Gone with the Wind were published in the same year (and Gone With the Wind was the one that won the Pulitzer), and Toni Morrison characterized Faulkner’s writing as a “refusal-to-look-away approach.”
We’re under a lot of stress these days. Have you tried re-reading your favorite childhood books?
Angie Thomas, author of the fantastic The Hate U Give, talked to Time about how books are changing the next generation.
There’s a new scam making the rounds: Scammers are impersonating literary agents and contacting writers out of the blue. Be careful out there!
Wired profiled Sacred Games author Vikram Chandra, who, in addition to writing and executive producing the Netflix series based on his novel, cofounded a startup making storytelling software that creates “a rule set” for fictional or nonfictional universes.
And at agent Kate McKean’s newsletter, bookseller Cristin Stickles has advice for authors on how to create a virtual author tour. Tons of great ideas in there!
This week in bestsellers
Here are the top five NY Times bestsellers in a few key categories. (All links are affiliate links):
Adult print and e-book fiction:
- Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
- The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett
- Sucker Punch by Laurell K. Hamilton
- The Silent Wife by Karin Slaughter
- The Guest List by Lucy Foley
Adult print and e-book nonfiction:
- Live Free or Die by Sean Hannity
- Caste by Isabel Wilkerson
- Too Much and Never Enough by Mary L. Trump
- White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo
- How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
Young adult hardcover:
- Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
- Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare
- Hawk by James Patterson
Middle grade hardcover:
- Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure by Jeff Kinney
- Wonder by R.J Palacio
- Little Leaders by Vashti Harrison
- The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate
- Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid by Jeff Kinney
This week on the blog
Don’t forget that you can nominate your first page and query for a free critique on the blog:
In case you missed them, here are this week’s posts:
And keep up with the discussion in all the places!
And finally, it’s been yet another a stressful week. How about some Neko Case?
Have a great weekend!
Need help with your book? I’m available for manuscript edits, query critiques, and coaching!
For my best advice, check out my online classes, my guide to writing a novel and my guide to publishing a book.
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Photo: Manhattan Bridge BLM protest. Photo by me. Follow me on Instagram!
Very timely link to the vid about pen names, as I consider what I want my pen name to be and how to build a platform with it. Thanks for sharing it!
Neil Larkins says
Excellent Sunday post, as usual!
I’ve considered a pen name. Thanks for the video.
Also…. Neko Case!!!
Diane Bransford says
You did a fantastic job on the podcast, Nathan!