Friday, June 28, 2013


Dear Friends & Readers,

More than 1000 people per month read this blog -- or so say the stats. I'm so thrilled that you're reading. Thanks so much for being so dedicated, and interested, and for always coming by! :)

Alas, one sad thing for me is that very few of you write comments on the blog.

This makes it hard for me to know which blog posts are most helpful to you.

It also doesn't give the wonderful expert authors who share their tips with you the opportunity to hear your feedback and thoughts about what you learned from them -- which would make the blog interviews even better!

So, I'm hosting a COMMENTS CONTEST this summer.  It's easy to win.

Over the next few months (as always,) great YA/MG/Children's authors will share tips with you here,  about specific aspects of the craft and the children's/YA publishing industry.
(Next up is award-winning and brilliant YA nonfiction author Steve Sheinkin).

As always there will also be posts containing other helpful info to further your writing career -- contests, publishing opportunities, and links.  Posts will continue to appear on the blog each Saturday morning.

So, here's how to win the contest.


1.) It runs from The 1st Saturday post in June TO the last Saturday post in August, 2013.

2.) EVERY TIME that you write a relevant (related to that post) comment on any post during the June-August 2013 time period A Slip of paper containing your name will be placed in the drawing jar.  This means that the number of relevant comments you make will equal the number of opportunities you have to win!  It's that easy!

3.) 4 Lucky Winners will be selected from the jar at the end of August! :) 
They'll each win a YA/Children's book by one of our summer expert authors -- each with a special writing or publishing tip from the expert author inside. 

So, don't be shy. Share your thoughts on the June, July and August Posts! 

(Yes, this means there may be some posts from June that you've already missed. But there's still time to comment on them!)

**Having Trouble posting comments directly onto the blog? NO Worries! Send your comment via email to and I'll post your comments on the blog for you.

Now....May the best commenters win! 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Opportunities for Poets - Contests

 In the large, bustling city of Santiago, in the Dominican Republic, an older man sits quietly on a bench reading about his city.  He isn't phased by the traffic and tourists rushing by around him. He doesn't move or shift his focus from the page. Probably that's because he's made of metal.  He is a replica of Manuel Del Cabral -- one of the Dominican Republic's most well-known poets.

In his honor we're sharing opportunities for Poets this week on Writermorphosis.

Many wordsmiths feel they're swimming up hill when they attempt to get their poems published.  It seems there are very few book editors looking for poems, unless you manage to get one accepted into one of the occasional anthologies of poems for children or adults.  It also may seem that there are very few magazines and hardly any legitimate contests accepting poetry today 

But Poets, please don't panic!   

There are more opportunities out there than you think!

Let's start with the CONTESTS...

I was going to pull together a list of great Poetry Writing Contests for you, but our friend "Creative Genius" has already put together a truly fabulous list of 2013/2014 opportunities:

So I'd encourage all poetry writers to check it out this week and mark your calendars for these
great opportunities.

Now, to remind us why we all love poetry -- and why it's so important, and SO difficult to write, here are a few quotes about poetry, from famous poets and authors:

A poet's work is to name the unnameable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world, and stop it going to sleep. --  Salman Rushdie 

Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary. -- Khalil Gibran

Poetry: the best words in the best order.Samuel Taylor Coleridge 

One merit of poetry few persons will deny: it says more and in fewer words than prose. -- Voltaire 

Always be a poet, even in prose. --  Charles Baudelaire 


Friday, June 14, 2013

Bilingual Publishing in the U.S. today

Have you written a book that targets Latino kids or teens in the U.S.

Are you hoping to get a memoir published about your life as a Korean teen growing up on a farm in Kansas?

Do you know of a great book by an author in another country that should be translated for a U.S. audience?

Whether you're saying "Sí" or "No"  -- either way -- you might be intrigued to learn more about         Bi-lingual Publishers who are printing books in the U.S. today.

Here's a video from YouTube about one such Bilingual Publisher: Atria, and about the state of Bilingual Publishing in the U.S. today:

Judith Curr of Atria Talks About Bilingual Publishing in the U.S.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

AUTHOR PLATFORM: Do you need one to market your books?


It's something many agents and editors say helps them decide whether to take on a new author or a new book, or not.  But there's a lot of confusion about the term and what it means for authors and illustrators. So... what on earth is it?  Do you need one?  And if so, how do you create one?


"What editors and agents typically mean by platform (is that) they’re looking for someone (an author) with visibility and authority who has proven reach to a target audience."- Editor Jane Friedman, the former publisher of Writer's Digest

In an excellent recent blog post Jane Friedman explained that author platform consists of "Visability, Authority, Proven Reach, and a Target Audience."

If you want to know more about these aspects of an author platform, and to also see Jane's great list of what an author platform "is NOT."

Read her fabulous blog post:

A Definition of Author Platform.

And here are additional helpful thoughts and tips in an article published in the Huffington Post by Dan Blank, from

It's also been said that Author Platform is just that -- a Platform, a Deck which holds up your book and your work as an author.  It's a Foundation that makes your book go father and helps keep your career as an author afloat.

Next week on Writermorphosis you'll find tips, supports, and links for creating and maintaining your Author Platform.  

After that we have more great author-tips interviews coming down the pike!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Book Expo America -- AKA "Where is my Agent?"

If you've had trouble finding your agent or your publisher over the past week it's probably because they've been at Book Expo America.  If you've been following any agents on Twitter you've seen updates like "Just got on the plane... can't wait!" and "Got a line-up of meetings with publishers scheduled before the event starts.'" and "Looking forward to seeing all my friends soon!"

So what on earth is Book Expo America?  Why do the agents and publishing professionals head there in droves?  Most importantly -- should you as an author go there next year to pitch your book to all those industry professionals who seem to be suddenly congregating in the same place?
Well - not exactly.

BookExpo America ( BEA), is the largest annual book trade fair in the United States. BEA is almost always held in a major city over four days in late May and/or early June. Nearly all significant book publishers in the United States, and many from abroad, have booths and exhibits at BEA, and use the fair as an opportunity to showcase upcoming titles, sell current books, socialize with colleagues from other publishing houses, and sell and buy subsidiary rights and international rights. (Authors, librarians, and buyers for book retailers also attend the event.) Some authors are invited to give presentations.

So, what this means to you as an author is

1.) You should NOT go to BEA to try to Pitch your book to an agent or publisher.  That's not why the industry professionals are there, and you're not likely to receive a positive response (Check out this Article "Three Reasons Why You Should Never Pitch At BEA" published by Writer's Digest..)

2.) Nevertheless, BEA is a Wonderful Event that Supports Authors by getting your books sold!

How?  This is the big event where U.S. publishing professionals and book marketers get together and learn about the newest trends in publishing.  BEA helps publishing professionals keep up with the times and find new ways to keep marketing all those books that we authors are writing!

BEA is also open to the public for 1 day during which books are sold and autographed by authors who have been hand-picked by their publishers. The Publishers and Marketing folks also staff tables, tables, and more tables where they hand out free sample chapters and other bits of swag advertising new books that are about to come out.

Check out this Article with tips and information for the non-author public about this year's BEA
Book Expo America Opens at the Javits Center, May 2013

Also, in case you want to know what kind of presentations and lectures your agent or marketing professionals from various publishing houses have been listening to and talking about all weekend ---

Here are links where you can watch the event presentations streamed during the event this weekend (it ends today, so watch the videos fast)!

I've pulled out a few here (click the links below) that you might find interesting.

Interview: MG writer Tyler Whitesides at BEA 2013

A Profitable Future for Illustrated Books by Nick Clements, Global Publishing Segment Manager at the Hewlett Packard Company

Creating Best-Selling Interactive E-books

Activities related to Children's Book Publishing


So, if you're missing your agents this week, don't be mad at them.  They're probably off chatting with marketing folks and publisher friends, making sure they have their fingers on the pulse of the industry, so that they can help YOU get your books out there on those e-readers and bookstore shelves in the very near future!