Ask The Expert

“Can My Family Sue Me?”

I have a million story ideas, many of them based upon my own wonderful (and dysfunctional) family or my wonderful (and dysfunctional) friends and relationships. I am scared to use this material, as I suspect the origin of my ideas will be obvious. How do you use this incredibly valuable and fascinating material without offending everyone you love? …

Where can I find a good editor?; Should I pay an agent?; Selling essays now hurt future book?

Where can I find an editor? I am currently writing a book and need to find someone to edit it. Do you have any suggestions? Please click above for a list of freelance editors we recommend. Should I pay an agent? Hi Angela, I have a question. A literary agent is interested in representing my books, but charges a fee. Is this a normal practice? They have a listing on editors and predators as a bad agency... Will selling my essays as a column hurt future book possibility? I hate to bug you like this, but you really are the only person in the world who seems to have answers to some of the thornier questions we blossoming freelancers sometimes face... …

Q&A

Due to the short holiday week, this issue is abbreviated. Ask the Expert will return to this spot next week. You can read last week's Q&A at HERE. …

How to protect children’s privacy in stories

I've enjoyed your magazine for the past couple of years, both informative and entertaining. I've seen the columns where you "give advice" and I could use a little help myself. I write fiction and my wife has just caught the "writing bug" and has decided to write about her adventures with our two kids and six foster kids. In this day and age, legalities abound, so can you tell me if we can we use the children's real names in her stories? …

Becoming a Correspondent / Book Proposal Help

~Becoming a "Correspondent"~ I've been a subscriber to your newsletter for quite some time. I was in California writing primarily for local/regional pubs, but we are now in Las Vegas, NV. I'm trying to get some work with local pubs, but the going is slow. I also have a 17 month old at home, so finding time to make contacts, put together clips, etc., is rather difficult. ~Book Proposal Help~ I've completed a Biography/Memoir and need to know is where (online, bookstore, library) I can find market statistics on the book sales of similar books and/or competitors? …

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