Monday, November 19, 2012

Your Writer Inbox

By Pamela

I've been pretty diligent lately at unsubscribing to some email lists. You know how it goes. You buy something online; you end up on their list. But some mailing lists I make sure I stay on and those are writing-related organizations I feel are helpful, informative and relevant.

Flickr image by JellyWatson
Before I share those, a quick word about email accounts. You might want to set up a separate email account  strictly for writing correspondence. That's a particularly a good idea if you're querying and your current email account features a quirky made-for-you name such as or, of course, you're querying a book about cats. I'd suggest some version of your name as the prefix. And if your name is particularly tricky to spell, you might even consider an abbreviated version of it. The last thing you want is an agent or editor trying to reach you and misspelling your name.

Here are some writer-based organizations from which I receive regular emails:

  • Writer's Digest--With Writer's Digest you can discover a wealth of information in one click. Get a weekly writing prompt; sign up for a class, webinar or tutorial; enter a writing contest and so much more. No membership required.
  • The Writer's Center--Even without becoming a member of this organization, you can sign up to receive email alerts about upcoming classes being offered. I've not taken a class yet, but Joan did and found it extremely helpful, so I think I can recommend this source without hesitation.
  • Publishers Marketplace--Every day I get PublishersLunch (and then on Wednesday LunchWeekly) in my inbox. Publishers Marketplace will send you these to keep you informed about the latest book deals and business changes in the ever-evolving publishing world at no charge. Pony up $20 a month to receive the deluxe version for even more insight. 
  • The Writer--This is the online version of the magazine (and the only one I subscribe to) but you don't have to have a subscription to read a sampling of the content offered online. I always learn something useful here.
  • Good Reads--While not a 'writer-based' site, GoodReads does keep me in tuned to what books are trending, what people are reading and what writers' blog posts I might be missing. And you can't be a good writer if you're not reading, so GoodReads can be considered a writer's tool, nonetheless. 
  • WriterUnboxed--Writer Unboxed is an online community of writers, agents and others who write about the craft and business of fiction. On their home page, you'll find a bright green tab on the far left that reads: WU Extras. Click on it and a pull-down menu will appear. Then select the WU Monthly Newsletter to get signed up. Take a moment to check out their most-helpful blog while you're there. 

That's a quick roundup of my inbox. What do you find helpful in yours?

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