- Paperback: 306 pages
- Publisher: Nomad Press; 1 edition (Jan. 1 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0974934445
- ISBN-13: 978-0974934440
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 476 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,917,606 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Street Smart Writer: Self Defense Against Sharks and Scams in the Writing World Paperback – Jan 1 2006
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Here's a welcome flip side to those how-to-be-a-writer books that either ignore or barely mention the dark side of writing for hire. The authors--respectively, the founder of absolutewrite.com and a lawyer specializing in publishing-related matters--give readers the skinny on such matters as agents (how can you tell the good from the bad?); writing contests (how to spot the scams); vanity presses and other pay-for-publish schemes (not all of them are rip-offs); and other potentially shady elements of the business of writing. The book offers a number of revelations--you don't need an agent to get published, despite what nearly everybody seems to tell you--and it contains such a large amount of essential information that it should be required reading for anyone with a story to sell. It's also worth noting that, overall, the authors take an optimistic stance: the business of writing, they say, is full of honorable people genuinely interested in seeing writers succeed. But there are also charlatans, too, and this guide tells you where to look for them. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Too many writers have gone innocently down the wrong path with a scam literary agent or publishing house and lived to regret their choice. Follow the wise counsel in these pages and you will protect yourself from disappointment and you will save yourself a lot of money and grief.
I initially picked the book up at my library, and I hadn't gotten halfway through it before I knew I had to buy it. Best decision I have made in a long time.
Thanks to her informative 'Street Smarts', I was able to publish my E-Book, 'Love Goes To Nam' on Smashwords.com.
Author of 'Love Goes To Nam'.
If you're not familiar with Jenna Glatzer then you really need this book because you're obviously not as internet/writer savvy as you need to be. Jenna is the owner of AbsoluteWrite.com, a writer friendly site. She's also the author of Make a Real Living as a Freelance Writer and one of my favourites, Outwitting Writer's Block. Not only does she write for writers but the last year she wrote an authorized biography for Celine Dion: For Keeps. This working writer has a knack for sharing her experience with others. In this publication she has joined forces with Daniel Steven, a writer and publishing lawyer.
This is definitely a must-have guide for writers, especially the writer who dabbles in many areas. It's not only about what to avoid but doing it better. The Street-Smart Writer is divided into 17 chapters with an appendix of additional forms tacked on the end. Chapter breakdown:
1 - Agents & Managers (spotting sharks)
2 - Agents & Managers (finding a good one)
3 - Paying to Publish (vanity and subsidy presses)
4 - What to do if you've been screwed
5 - Trouble Spots in Book Contracts
6 - After Publication Rip-offs for Book Authors
7 - Vanity Poetry Contests
8 - Deceptive Contests for Novelists, Short Story Writers, Screen writers & others
9 - Crash Course in Copyright
10 - Special Screw-over for Screenwriters
11 - Monstrous Magazines & E-zines
12 - Dealing with Deadbeats
13 - Costly Courses & Shady Seminars
14 - How to Know When They're really using You
15 - Spotting False Credentials
16 - Protecting Yourself from Threats & Lawsuits
17 - "They Stole My Idea!" and other things not to worry about.
One of the things I appreciated about the Street-Smart Writer was its ability to explain instead of tell. Like the "big bucks" you make at vanity presses: -Let's say you managed to sell a hundred copies through bookstores. How much would you earn on a 250-page paperback book printed as cheaply as possible with a retail price of $20? About $240. Which means if you paid a print-on-demand company to publish your book and didn't even spend a dime to have it edited or promoted, you still wouldn't even have recouped your initial investment, let alone made any profit from your hard work.- To finish off Street-Smart provides a commercial publisher arrangement for you to compare. An eye opener for anyone thinking they can make big(ger) bucks by doing it themselves.
Many sample letters appear throughout and to help you decipher any forms the appendix provides examples of: Literary Agent Agreement, Interview Release, Permissions Agreement, Contributors Agreement, Trade Publishing Agreement, Film Option & Literary Purchase Agreement. These are not meant to be substitute agreements but to give you some background information when you're cool and collected because you know your stomach is going to be in knots when the real thing comes.
There's so much in this book for the eclectic writer. But any writer can learn from all these areas and apply it to their own work. Jenna Glatzer's usual comedic style, logic and blunt truth delivers the cold hard facts about the writing world. In layman's terms she explains away the idiots of the industry's scam tactics by teaching readers how to read between the lines. It's not meant to be a scare tactic but to make you an informed writer and it accomplishes its task. Reviewed by M. E. Wood.