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Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a Chick Lit Novel
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Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a Chick Lit Novel

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  229 ratings  ·  36 reviews
Will Write for Shoes: How to Write a Chick Lit Novel
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published September 5th 2006 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published 2006)
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3.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  229 ratings  ·  36 reviews

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Dec 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I've read dozens of writing books over the years (maybe even a hundred) and this is one of the very few that actually helped me. I highly recommend this book to anyone trying to structure a book, not just chick lit but any book. Cathy Yardley offers up a "map" that is extremely useful for finding your way through mess of a first draft.
Jay Fingers
Feb 27, 2012 rated it liked it

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Just so you know, the full title of romance author Cathy Yardley’s how-to book is Will Write for Shoes: How to Write A Chick Lit Novel . Does it strike you as odd that I would read such a book? It shouldn’t – especially if you’ve already read my novel GUESTLIST.

In the weeks leading up to GUESTLIST’s release, whenever most people asked what genre it would fall into, I would say, without hesitation, “chick lit.” That response was usually followed by a look of utter perplexity.

But th
Suzie Quint
Oct 18, 2014 rated it did not like it
Allow me to preface my review with my criteria regarding writing books that lay claim to a particular focus. If a book claims to tell you how to write dialog, for instance, and three chapters are about dialog and then it devolves into advice about writing in general, I’m not going to be impressed, no matter how good the in-general advice is. Like fiction, the book makes a specific promise in the title and the beginning pages. Whatever else the book does, I expect it to payoff that specific promi ...more
Sep 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing
A little out of date, understandable as it was published in 2006. The first half of the book is really helpful. Cathy provides a structure you can work off to write your chick lit novel and she answers some of the most common questions first time romance writers have. The second section of the book about publishing houses etc is the part that’s dated. Publishing has changed a lot in the past 10 years. I definitely think an updated version of the book would be of great benefit to aspiring authors ...more
Kerry Crisley
Jun 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A quick, detailed, and motivating guide for aspiring novelists. Gives practical advice with real examples. A great starting place!
May 01, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
just like the title says: a basic how-to on writing a chick lit novel. i picked it up out of idle curiosity & found it far more helpful than i ever would have imagined. there's a lot solid advice in here for writing just about any kind of fiction. i especially appreciated the insights on pacing & outlining a plot. it sounds like cathy yardley & i are of one mind when it comes to compulsive writerly habits, & i really enjoyed reading about her process, even though i have never rea ...more
Sep 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Will Write for Shoes is a great resource for anyone who is considering writing chick lit (but it can also be useful for writers of any genre). Ms. Yardley has a humorous style to present a wealth of information about everything from what is and what is not chick lit, how to develop your chick lit story, and how to market and sell your chick lit novel. She doesn't sugarcoat anything, but it is perhaps tied up with a pink bow in a pair of stilettos, with titles such as "Warning: Period of Time Whe ...more
Claire Dawn
Jan 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The only thing I wasn't fully on board with was the definition of Chick Lit. Even though Yardley herself admitted that traditional Chick Lit was not the only type, she kept coming back to the definition of looking for boyfriend in a fast-paced urban setting.

Other than that, the book reads like a dream. What kind of character can you have? What is plot? How do you outline? What if you don't want to outline? How should your setting interplay with the other elements of your story? She also include
Jan 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I've read and reread this book at least twice. It's a fantastic, helpful and humorous book on approaching the wonderful (and sometimes, scary) world of writing - specifically chick lit or women's fiction, whatever you prefer to call the genre. Determined to proclaim to the world that Chick Lit is NOT Dead, this book offers surefire methods to get you brainstorming, pen moving and then knocking on a publisher's door (in your fave stilettos, of course). Filled with great tips on character building ...more
A. T. Adlen
Jun 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
At a very recent library excursion, I picked this book up availing to use it as a guide for "what NOT to do".
I was pleasant surprised! It is actually a very smart, concise cut-through-the-bull kind of writing resource (which I have noticed over the years is hard to come by).

If you are on the fence about reaching for this book because you are nervous about likening your work to Chick-lit, I recommend giving it a look? If anything it helps give a more broad exploration of a "trendy" genre (a tren
Gemini Adams
Nov 15, 2011 rated it liked it
I work with authors across multiple genres guiding them in writing and publishing. I picked up this book as research for a client. At first it was jolly! Easy to read and a Chick Lit tone that amused. But this became tiresome in the context of a guidebook. Lots of references to other people's writing but very few examples. This is indeed a guide book as it tells you where to go to get the information you might need for crafting your Chick Lit novel but it is very thin on writing content examples ...more
Lynn Blackmar
Apr 27, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
This book has some good information about writing Chick Lit, but much of it is standard advice of writing books. A good half of the book is on publishing, and not on writing, so I think some of this could have been referred out to other resources in favor of a deeper treatment of writing specifically chick lit. For example, the types of Chick Lit were summarized in a couple pages, but there was a whole chapter on querying. While the advice is fair for querying specifically chick lit, the book ti ...more
Apr 12, 2012 rated it liked it
While the title suggests that this book is aimed at Chick Lit writes exclusively, I found it to be a helpful resource for writing in general. The overall feel of this book is light hearted and breezy, yet manages to pack in pleanty of good sound advice and helpful tips both for getting your story writen and getting it published.
Michelle Ham
May 05, 2011 rated it liked it
I was really getting into the whole reading about the craft of writing a novel, when it seemed to abruptly shift to the whole business side of things - getting an agent and so forth. Plenty of good info and her mind seems to work the same way as mine - just a bit light on. Am now on the look-out for a more comprehensive guide - perhaps the Weekend Novelist, which she refers to.
Jan 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014-reads
an excellent source for aspiring chick- lit authors . Its an easy enjoyable read that throughly explains the charactristics, and how one should go about in becoming a sucessful author. Although the chick Lit Genre is the focus of this book. I think that all aspiring authors can benefit from this book.
Oct 27, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: self-help
Only gave this book 1 star because i dont know why i read it. i am not planning on writing a chic lit book or any book for that matter. there were some good references to books in there that i might pick up and read.
Nov 05, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: chick lit author wannabes
This book is awesome for those who have the dream of becoming a chick lit author - a guilty pleasure of mine! Such a good resource book and also has tips on writing groups and basic plot outlines for any type of novel. Thanks Lynn for this recommendation!
Dec 15, 2012 rated it it was ok
The chick lit history and trends part was quite interesting and fun. The guide for writing didn't give me anything really new. The breaking into the market part was not really useful for anybody outside the US.
Mar 02, 2011 added it
Shelves: writing-craft
A quick read. Writer primer: if you don't get the concept of voice, read this next to another how-to-write-a-novel book and note the differences.
Feb 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I liked this book a lot. Even though I am not a chick-lit fan, per se, this has a lot of good advice for those looking to write a novel.
Jennifer Marshburn
This is a great guide to writing. While it is very specific to the genre of chic lit, the author gives a lot of good general advice in parts, and the writing exercises are great!
Oct 12, 2014 rated it it was ok
2.5 - I preferred See Jane Write to this. OK read.
Jan 08, 2008 marked it as to-read
I'll write for shoes! (And socks.)
Jan 20, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I enjoyed this--finished it in a day. It was really helpful, as I have taken to learning about writing. I would love to read more of Cathy Yardley's novels. Her writing is a delight.
Denise Covey
Jul 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Love this no-nonsense guide/suggested path for writing chick lit novels. I learned so much about premise, plotting and story ideas. Should be more of this type of how-to tome.
Michelle Molinari
May 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Great advise if you want to be a writer and need a little advise on how the pro’s do it.
Sep 22, 2009 rated it liked it
Had some good info on finding an agent and a lot of resources. Seemed to primarily take material from other sources, such as "the weekend novelist"
Jun 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Really great advice about plots, outlining, characterization, and more. But it didn't touch on self-publishing at all, which is a pretty big topic to skip in the 21st century.
Nov 05, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: writing-books
Goodreads needs a category for "I skimmed it." Knew I wasn't writing Chick Lit and confirmed this fact after skimming the first few pages. It's probably a great resource for someone who is.
Livia Blackburne
May 13, 2010 rated it liked it
I share some tips from the book here:
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Cathy Yardley is an award-winning author of romance, chick lit, and urban fantasy, who has sold over 1.2 million copies of books for publishers like St. Martin's, Avon, and Harlequin. She writes fun, geeky, and diverse characters who believe that underdogs can make good and that sometimes being a little wrong is just right.