Writer's Digest November/December 2020

Writer's Digest magazine is a comprehensive source of writing instruction for writers. Each issue provides advice and insider tips on writing and selling fiction, nonfiction, poetry and scripts.

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United States
Active Interest Media
USD 5.99
USD 14.99
8 Números

en este número

2 min.
from our readers

January 2012. I was losing interest in my scientific career and at the last minute decided to attend the Writer’s Digest Conference in New York. Intimidated by the throng of editors, established authors, and author-wannabes, I ventured into the Pitch Slam room to try my luck at “speed dating for writers.” Nervously pitching one proposal, two hours later I walked out with an agent and a contract for a completely different book. Ensuing years produced two more book contracts. This year I come full circle, writing the book I initially pitched in 2012. Writer’s Digest changed my life. —David J. Kent In 2017 and 2018, one of my short stories was selected as an honorable mention in the WD Popular Fiction Awards. I was going through a difficult time of loss, illness,…

2 min.
a love letter

It’s hard to overstate just how much Writer’s Digest has survived to make it to its centennial. The Great Depression. World War II. The many wars and societal revolutions of the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s. The recession of the ’80s. The technological revolution and the creation of the internet. The shift from being a family-owned business to a corporation with investors. The Great Recession. Bankruptcy and changes in corporate ownership. And most recently, a global pandemic. It is because WD survived all that, that I view this anniversary issue as a love letter to every single person who has contributed to keeping WD alive over these amazing, and tough, and changefilled 100 years. Thank you to the Rosenthal family for the vision of starting a magazine—a community—like this. To the publishers,…

2 min.

CHRISTOPHER STOLLAR (ChristopherStollar.com) is an award-winning author, accredited public relations professional, and former reporter with a master’s degree in journalism who works full-time in marketing at Nationwide. Stollar’s debut novel, The Black Lens, won Grand Prize in the 2016 Writer’s Digest Self-Published E-Book Awards. It also became a finalist in the Indie Book Awards and a semifinalist in the Book Pipeline Competition. His new novel, Real Girl, placed as a Top 25 Finalist in the 2020 Launch Pad Manuscript Competition and is currently being pitched to publishers by senior agent Paula Munier of Talcott Notch Literary. ZACHARY PETIT (ZacharyPetit.com) is an award-winning freelance journalist and copywriter, the editor of PRINT magazine, and a lifelong literary and design nerd. He is the author of the books The Essential Guide to Freelance Writing…

4 min.
how writer’s digest began

It was post-World War I and the U.S. was in a mood to celebrate her newly found muscle on the world’s battlefields. Everyone boasted, and we all wanted to tell the world “how we did it!” But the telling required words … and printing … and paper. In the fall of 1920, Ed Rosenthal went to New York in search of paper for his Cincinnati-based printing and publishing companies. He found three sources so quickly that he decided (in the extra time he had) to chase a star that had been playing hide and seek with him for years. He wanted to publish a magazine that would take the writer out of the garret and into the marketplace where the demand for his wares had never been greater. He wanted to show…

7 min.
tools of the trade

Every writer knows the buzz of an idea coming to life, a story beginning to unfold like one of those Japanese paper flowers in a bowl of water. Sometimes the feeling happens at the most inconvenient time, when driving or in the shower—with no pen or paper in sight. If not written down, it may be lost forever, like a dream—which feels so real in the moments after waking up that forgetting seems impossible. And yet, minutes later The transmittal (or translation) of an emotional experience into language is as old as human culture. Of course, we’ve only had writing for a few thousand years. Before then, the ancient storytellers of the world, from Greece to Mesopotamia to West Africa, conceived their epic poems orally, to be shared on special days. Those same…

3 min.
becoming a professional

When my sister’s friend lent me her copy of Writer’s Digest magazine, I studied it as though trying to pass the bar. I’d been writing for years and craved to be published. It was the summer of ’66, and I was 14 and clueless. In the boonies where I lived, craft-books stayed on reference shelves and writing courses were beyond my reach. But at the public library, I read the latest issues of Writer’s Digest, taking notes on markets and articles, especially on how to break into print. WD explained submission etiquette—not a single poem jotted the night before on loose-leaf paper then arrowed to The New Yorker, a magazine I’d never even seen. Now a fledgling professional, I subbed three to five typed poems, enclosing a self-addressed stamped envelope. The next…