Self-Defense Against Sharks and Scams in the Writing World
By Jenna Glatzer and Daniel Steven
Veteran writer Jenna Glatzer teams up with
publishing attorney Daniel Steven to expose the scams and unsavory
deals writers are likely to encounter along their path to publishing
success. The Street-Smart Writer is an essential reference for all
writers to getting published without getting swindled.
This book will help writers spot an honest agent or manager, determine
the value of vanity publishing, and avoid getting conned out of
hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars when signing a contract.
Sections on writing contests teach writers how to determine which
contests are useless; other sections offer tips on avoiding costly
conferences and shady seminars. A special focus on copyright ensures
that writers protect their work from schemers who want to use
creativity without paying for it. Appendices include sample publishing,
agent, and manager contracts.
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
"While the pen is mightier than the sword, many writers lack a shield.
The Street-Smart Writer is that shield."
--Dave Kuzminski, Editor, Preditors & Editors™
"Never get swindled again! The unscrupulous prey on the dreams of
writers, but with this book as your guide, scammers will have to look
for a new target. You'll learn to tell the legit from the fishy when it
comes to contracts, vanity presses, agents, writing contests, and more."
--Linda Formichelli, co-author of The Renegade Writer: A Totally
Unconventional Guide to Freelance Writing Success
"Street-Smart is a very smart book indeed, full of the sort of wisdom
that too-often costs young writers time, money, and manuscripts. Jenna
Glatzer acts as a lifeguard, pointing out the riptides, undertows, and
sharks that can turn a day at the beach into more adventure than you'd
care to have. Better than learning by experience is learning by others'
--James D. Macdonald, Author of The Apocalypse Door, Sysop of SFF.net
"Ms Glatzer's information on publishing and bookselling, particularly
paying to be published, is very accurate and describes all the issues
related to getting published vs. paying to publish, cagey language on
marketing and distribution used by companies to snare unsuspecting
writers. She also describes how the legitimate process works with
industry standards, marketing and distribution. She dispels the mystery
of the basic economics of bookselling and the process bookstores follow
to stock their shelves."
--Anita Zager, Northern Lights Books & Gifts, Duluth MN