Thursday, October 1, 2015


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There are so many books on writing. If I can only buy one—which one should it be?

After creating and updating the Christian Writers' Market Guide 27 times, it's no surprise that Sally Stuart would be the one to create the most knowledge-filled and comprehensive book on the publishing industry—and writing in general. Not only definitions and detailed explanations on every term you can think of related to writing, but the best website she could find that provides even more how-to and  examples on each topic. This is a book you'll turn to daily as you get deeper into this writing business.
To place a book order,
call 503-642-9844.

The Writing World Defined: A to Z retails at $20.99
plus $3.22 postage ($24.21 total).  
Here's what some professional writers are saying about this book:

“Many, I among them, consider Sally Stuart the dean of American Christian freelance writing. She's been at the craft as long as any of us, setting an example of excellence while acquiring and encyclopedic knowledge of the industry. All that and more she offers here, in a compendium you'll quickly find indispensable. I expect it to inform my own writing from now on.”
                                                                                                Jerry B. Jenkins

The Writing World Defined—A to Z is a must-have for every writers' or would-be writers' reference shelf. Sally not only defines terms, she teaches how to use them, making this comprehensive source more valuable than a dictionary.”
                Lin Johnson, Write-to-Publish Conference Director & Mng. Editor, Christian Communicator

“Wow! Not only does Sally Stuart define words writers need to know, she removes the frustration of not understanding the definition by italicizing words that she also defines. This is an amazing reference book by an amazing author who has long been known and appreciated for generously sharing her knowledge with writers at all levels.”
                                                         Marlene Bagnull, Author Write His Answer,
                                                          Director, Colorado & Greater Philly Christian Writers Conferences

“Wondering how to navigate the unique world of author-speak? Look no further than Sally Stuart's The Writing World Defined: A to Z. In this amazing volume, Stuart's expertise shines through every definition, and beyond that, offers wisdom for your own practical application. Stuart helped me interpret my first book contract 22 years ago, and I continue to consult her expert knowledge. Essential for every writer!”
                                                                              Lucinda Secrest McDowell, author Live These Words

Here's just a brief example of the nearly 800 definitions waiting for you in this must-have reference book:

Advance. Amount of money a publisher pays to an author up front, against future royalties. The advance must be earned back before you receive future royalty payments. The amount varies greatly from publisher to publisher (typically $1,000 to $10,000), and is often paid in two or three installments (on signing the contract, on delivery of the manuscript, and on publication of the book). Some smaller publishers do not pay an advance. The amount of the advance can be negotiated at the contract stage. Some writers choose not to take an advance so they don't have to worry about earning it back.
        Payment of an advance represents a risk on the part of the publisher, because they can never be sure the author will earn back that advanced amount. If an author doesn't earn it back, they do not have to reimburse the publisher for the shortfall. About the only reason authors would have to pay back an advance is if  they didn't submit an acceptable final draft of the book, or failed to live up to any other clause in the contract.
        Originally, the purpose of an advance was to support the writer while he completed the manuscript, and if that is a need, it can still be based on that today. However, many writers feel like the amount of the advance is an indication of how well the publisher thinks the book will do in the marketplace, and how committed they are to promoting the book. For answers to the most common questions about advances and royalties, go to:

Back-cover copy. The text appearing on the back of the book jacket for a hardback book, or on the back cover of a paperback book. It might include a teaser summary of the book; a few endorsements; and/or an author bio. This content is usually prepared by an editor at the publishing house using the information provided by the author, but in smaller houses, the author may be asked to write it. Usually the author will be given an opportunity to see and approve it before it goes to press. Since reading this  often determines whether or not the potential reader buys or decides to read the book, it's important the information is correct and the comments on the book compelling enough to capture the reader's interest. If the publisher has someone else do the back cover copy, and you think you can do better, let them know, and write up your own version. Some authors will include the back-cover copy as part of their book proposal. For tips on writing persuasive back-cover copy, and some samples for various fiction genres, go to: For general tips on this topic, go to:

Character tags. Attributes of characters setting them apart from one another. In fiction, it is important the readers can see a specific difference between characters. One way to make those characters distinctly different is to give them a variety of tagsBy tags, we mean such things as their manner of speech, the way they interact with the other characters, a favorite saying or cliche they repeat regularly, a tune they whistle or hum, perhaps a gesture such as pulling their earlobe, or twisting their hair around a finger. Tags can either endear a character to us or simply annoy us—and the reader. A good example of characters with very distinctive tags would be the various Charlie Brown characters. We are never likely to get them mixed up. When writing a children’s book or a novel, you want each character to be so distinctly different the reader can usually tell who's talking without being told. Character tags can also include the character's choice of clothing or hair style. If you are able to describe a favorite storybook or novel character from memory, that description will include the character's various tags. In creating your own characters, if you are not able to describe them accurately, it is usually because you have not endowed him or her with those unique tags. To learn more about character tags, go to:

**One writer reported that she keeps her copy of this book next to her bed and reads a few pages every night as she builds her knowledge of the writing world.
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