The “Strong Female Characters” title is in quotation marks because I mean it a little differently than people might think I do.
In this video, I explain how a “strong” female character is actually one that has agency and is an active participant in her own storyline. Often, these days, in a well-meaning attempt to diversify female characters and teach equality, writers and publishers are pushing an image of traditional femininity as weakness, and consequently presents girls and women in media who reject femininity and embrace more traditionally masculine attitudes, clothes, language, and roles as a way to show their strength. My video explains why this is not the only way to make a female character strong, and why we need other images of strength too.
Here’s something a little different from my usual: I’m offering a video about romance tropes in fiction and how they can sometimes send damaging messages to people about what real-life romance is and what place it should occupy in our lives. Informed primarily from an aromantic perspective–meaning that I’m a person who rarely sees herself in fictional narratives and is affected more negatively by certain messages about romance the way it is currently handled in fiction.
The big takeaway from this video is that we need more important friendships in our fiction! And fewer assumptions about the inevitability of romance and the heteronormative assumption!
Since I get a lot of questions from people wanting to begin or get back into their writing projects, I figured I would make this video with some hints on how to motivate yourself and get back into the writing groove.
Sometimes people think the only reason to try to get a literary agent is so you can have a chance at the Big Five or get considered by publishers who don’t take unagented stuff, but there are so many more things agents can and likely will do for clients besides sell their books. Here’s my video about those things. Agent love!
I’ve got a new video on querying literary agents . . . and this time, I’m addressing the not-so-frequently asked questions. If you’ve got the basics down but have some lingering concerns, check this out and ask your own!
In the video, I answer the following questions:
How many agents should I query at once?
How long is an average response time?
How do I respond if an agent wants to see part or all of my book?
Oh God, why am I so nervous? Why is this the hardest letter I’ve ever written?
What if all I’m getting are rejections?
What if I sent a partial or full manuscript a while ago but then I edited it and it’s better now? Should I send them my updated version?
How do I handle approaching remaining agents if one offers representation?
What if an agent wants me to make changes to my book and try again?
If I get a rejection from an agent, should I reply?
What if I get an offer from an agent I don’t want to represent me?
When can I list them as my agent on my blog and in my Twitter profile and stuff? I’m dying to tell everyone!
What if they seem interested but they refer me to an editor I have to pay for or promise representation for a reading fee?
What does it mean if the agent wants to call me?
Can I talk about my agent search online?
What’s your one piece of advice to an author newly querying agents?
Here’s a new video for you in which I go over the mistakes I’ve seen many querying authors making in their query letters. This is based on a couple years’ worth of Pitch Wars mentoring, outlining the problems with the synopses and the bio section that I saw the most often.
You really don’t want to fall for a publishing scam. But sometimes the world of getting published is a lot more complicated than it seems like it should be, so it’s easy to get swindled or tricked if you don’t know the red flags.