Squishy Middle

August 26, 2015

This post was written by CBramkamp

Newbie Guide  One comment

Maze in Cologne Cathedral

Chris Baty, founder of NaNoWriMo reminds us that the middle of any endeavor is called the Long, dark night of the soul for a reason.Maze in Cologne Cathedral

Every Hollywood movie has one because we love seeing our protagonists pummeled for a while before they pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and head out to kick some ass.”

During NaNoWriMo  while frantically (a fun frantic, make no mistake), the worst, more difficult part of the project is after 30,000 words or two weeks and you are suddenly in the quicksand of the middle.

So what is in your middle?  Do you need to change it up?  Is the heroine boring?  Is she given to spouting clichés?  Did she bat her eyes at the hero and then faint dead in his arms?

That’s what I thought.

Maybe your heroine needs a hobby.  Like lighting things on fire.Read More

Deconstructed Poem, what it looks like

August 19, 2015

This post was written by CBramkamp

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Luggage by Catharine Bramkamp
Luggage by Catharine Bramkamp

everything in one bag, – St. Petersburg

We were pleased to host Terry Lucas  (Episode 174) and learn more about poetry.  As an experiment I took Terry up on his 5 for $5 and sent in five poems.

Here is the poem and his suggestions, just so you can see what it’s like to work with a poetry coach.

The Poem:

Don’t Leave Home Without You  (Great Title!)

you are my flat umbrella  (as in broken open too far or unopened?  So he didn’t understand flat umbrella as a travel umbrella, so I need to another descriptor)
against the gutter running storm  (gutter-running)
In Port Douglas (Nice music: “umbrella,” “gutter,” and “running”; “storm” and “Port”)

You are the extra euros
tucked into rolled socks
stuffed into the backup flats  ( I’d say “my …flats”Read More

How to have a successful Agent Date

August 12, 2015

This post was written by CBramkamp

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Sometimes the most mysterious, difficult part of writing a book is find representation for that wonderful book.

The agent pitch on Newbie Writers GuideYou have the pitch, a new suit, you are confident on how to present your book and yourself.  But just who are these agents anyway?   Can you really screw up in the cozy environment of an expensive conference or pitch session?  Of course you can.

The bad news – and I share it with you right here – agents can make up their mind about you, and your book, in under 60 seconds.  But they sit with you for the other five minutes just to be polite.

You have one minute.   

What to do?  Here are best – and worst practices for a successful agent date.

Best practices include activities like:

  • Research, even as shallow as reading the conference brochure.  Sign up to talk to an agentRead More

Episode 182 – Market Above The Noise!

August 7, 2015

This post was written by Damien

Newbie Writers Podcast  No comments

The Newbie Writers’ Podcast

Guest: Linda Popky

Named one of Silicon Valley’s Top 100 Women of Influence and a member of Alan Weiss’s Million Dollar Consulting® Hall of Fame, Linda J. Popky has extensive experience in marketing – in industry, agencies, and consulting.

Linda is the founder and president of Leverage2Market® Associates, Inc., a strategic marketing company that helps organizations transform their business through marketing. She is the author of the forthcoming book Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing that Matters (Bibliomotion, March 2015).

If it relates to marketing, Linda has done it. Her expertise includes corporate marketing, communications and messaging, marketing team development, facilitation, sales training and support,Read More

What to say to an literary agent, or what I learned from coaching authors to create their perfect agent pitch.

August 5, 2015

This post was written by CBramkamp

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You are ready – you have your fabulous book. You make the drive to the city.  Once you found parking and found the building, what to do next?

The agent pitch on Newbie Writers GuideI volunteer to coach authors for WNBA-SF Pitch O Rama, an event (in March) focused exclusively on brining in 20 plus agents, editors and publishers into one building just so authors can talk with them.

It’s a great event, and many authors secure agents and publishers during the course of the morning.  This is what we’ve learned and observed.

Agents, publishers and acquisition editors attend these events because they, like you, want to see a face, hear a voice – make a connection.  Agent speed dating or Pitch O Rama, or a Pitch –  Fests are not  beauty contests.  There is no queen of the pitch (although now that I think about it . . Read More