Create/Gerry Wilson
Create/Gerry Wilson

I haven’t shared a Monday Discovery with you in a while. Here’s a quote from “Mantra for the Novelist” by Jael McHenry, debut novelist and contributor at Writer Unboxed. The entire article spoke to me, but these words really hit home:

People who don’t write any better than you do are making money doing what they love. People who made the right connection. People who were in the right place at the right time. Don’t begrudge them their success; they have nothing to do with you. You are your own person, writing your own words, working toward your own goals. Don’t be bitter. Don’t be angry. Be focused. Be self-centered in that good way, in the way that means you are wholly dedicated to perfecting your own craft, executing on your own plans, diligently moving forward, ever forward.

If you are a novelist who has not yet published a book, this inspiring read is for you! Go read it. Now.

Monday Discovery — The Query Tracker Blog: “Why You Should Critique Other People’s Queries” by Sarah Pinneo

Colored Pencils 1 by fangol,  www.sxc.ju
Colored Pencils 1 by fangol, http://www.sxc.ju

Many of you are familiar with Query Tracker, a gold mine of information about agents and publishing. This article on the Query Tracker Blog (posted 1/16/2013)—“Why You Should Critique Other People’s Queries” by Sarah Pinneo—particularly interested me, since I’m in the process of writing a new query letter.

The advice Sarah Pinneo offers is relevant to more than queries, though; it’s applicable to the many ways we read and critique for each other.

Here’s a gem:

Lastly, the art of critique is, in and of itself, an essential writerly skill. I have learned to start every critique by saying one positive thing. Even if the query needs buckets of work (and even if you suspect the manuscript does, too) there is always something encouraging to say.

A good read. Check it out.

Monday Discovery: Khara House’s “Why This Matters”

manifesto defined
manifesto defined

Today’s discovery is an article at Khara House’s Our Lost Jungle blog. In “Why this matters: (even when nobody’s listening): writing a writer’s manifesto,” Khara, a seasoned poet and blogger, deals with why writing matters and why we writers need to put our writing mission into words.

A terrific piece. I encourage you to go read and, if you’re a writer, try writing your own manifesto, a statement of who you are, what you do, and why it matters.

Khara will be a guest writer here on January 24.