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Author in Progress: A No-Holds-Barred Guide to What It Really Takes to Get Published

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4.36  ·  Rating details ·  137 ratings  ·  23 reviews
Paperback, 342 pages
Published November 2016 by Writer's Digest Books
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Average rating 4.36  · 
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Therese Walsh
Feb 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: for-writers
Want to know what it takes to push through a manuscript and finish your novel?

I'm the co-founder and editorial director of Writer Unboxed, and the editor and a co-author of Author in Progress. When the idea for a WU book first emerged via Writer's Digest, I wasn't certain I'd want to commit to the effort. On the other side of it, I'm so glad that I did. The full WU team stepped up to become a part of this project -- 50 contributors, including best-selling authors and industry leaders, and a few
...more
Paula Cappa
Nov 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Unbox your thinking. Unbox your writing. If you are a reader of the award-winning blog Writer Unboxed, then you know about this book on the skills of writing and the skills of getting published. Author in Progress has over 50 essays by some of the best writers, novelists, editors, and agents from the Writer Unboxed community.

In Part 1, literary agent Donald Maass tells us that “writing well doesn’t guarantee success,” so you can expect realistic perspectives in the content. What should you do ab
...more
Tonia Harris
Nov 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a Keep At Hand book after you read it from cover to cover book. I earmarked several essays with an eye on my journey ahead. It's inspiring, absolutely, and full of practical tips and various standpoints regarding writerly things such as MFAs and plotting vs. pantsing (or another road altogether). It's not only for the writer in medias res, but brilliant for those starting out and those who are ready to acknowledge they want to be writers. Aren't all writers works-in-progress, after all?
Colin Marks
Sep 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing-books
Writer Unboxed is a web-based community of writers, some traditionally published, some self-published while others write as a hobby, but everyone within the community wants to learn more about the craft and to share their experiences. I was sent an ARC of Author In Progress for an impartial review as I'm a member of that community. The thing is, though this is impartial, I knew I was going to love it even before it arrived.

One of the benefits of being in the WU community, is that every few days
...more
Vaughn Roycroft
Jan 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
[Upfront caveat: I'm one of 50+ contributors to this book.] I’ve said from the very beginning that there is nothing like this book available. Most writing and publishing books are fairly segmented and/or focused on a particular aspect of the writing journey, or on the business of publishing. The scope of Author In Progress (AIP) is uniquely unprecedented. It covers everything from one’s first ideas and tentative steps into writing fiction, all the way through being published, and beyond.

AIP’s br
...more
Charlotte Burt
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
A very informative collection of essays on all stages of the writing process.
Tammie Painter
Jan 27, 2018 rated it liked it
This is less of a how-to-write/how-to-get-published guide and more of a series of essays and Q&As about the writing life and various authors' views of how they approach writing. The advice is good but felt pretty standard. Worth a read if you have the time, but get it from your local library rather than shelling out money for it. ...more
Tom Bentley
Dec 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
OK, full disclosure first: I have an essay in this sterling compendium, so I've got nine cents of prejudice in action on the review. But I'm way more prejudiced toward the virtue of the whole of the collection, and the exemplary writing (and writers) within. This is a meaty book of strong counsel, backbone, butterfly and birthday cake for writers of all stripes who are serious about their work, and serious about making that work better.

There's a deep, deep well of topics to draw from here, from
...more
SeaShore
Jul 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: an-ongoing-read
I read most of this book in January 2020. You don't need to be writing or want to be a writer to read this. but these essays give you insight into what it takes to be an author. It is an ongoing read for me. It is a powerful compilation of reasons why authors needed to share their stories, creating the compelling narrative.

Dave King starts his by saying, "Writing is hard. Find the muse within the story. For the money is not necessarily the best reason to write. Or if you have a passion for an id
...more
Leslie
Jun 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
From the bloggers of Writer Unboxed, the only blog on writing I regularly read -- love the mix of advice on craft, marketing, and business. The essays are smart and varied, and short enough to read in snippets to let the wisdom sink in before you move on. I like the organization, including the generous use of headers, pro tips, and even the humorous but truthful tips on sabotaging yourself. This book is probably more useful for those just starting or in the early stages of their writing careers, ...more
Anna Serra i Vidal
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I can't really select a date I finished this book because I never really finish it. There are a few essays that speak to me in different ways and I read and reread them more and more. There are essays for every day, the crazy planning or the careful editing. For when the muse is in, or when it's missing.
Also reading it, it feels like I can be closer to the UnCon even if I'm on the other side of the world. Missing every friend and every learning moment, every lesson, every conversation.
Rachel
Aug 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Good, clear, informative, humorous. 4 1/2 stars.

I skipped one chapter (MFA: in favour thereof) and disagreed completely with one other (Go Public Before You've Even Written Your Book). Many of the essays reiterated things I already knew, but they did it well and gave me a few new things to think about along the way.

Personal favourite: 'Composing Humans On The Page: How to Mine, Visualise, and Empathise Your Way to Authentic Characters', by Julianna Baggott.
Dee Willson
Jan 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is an absolutely awesome read for any author serious about their craft. There is a ton of insight and experience jammed into this book, enough to inspire any writer, no matter where on the path you're currently meandering. Well written, thought provoking, and downright honest.

Dee Willson
Author of A Keeper's Truth and GOT (Gift of Travel)
www.deewillson.com
...more
Misty Harvey
Feb 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is absolutely amazing. It not only goes through the process of publishing but everything that goes with it - including the mentality. It is so rare to find books that include the mental process of the writing as they are usually only over the steps to get there. I absolutely love this book and have been recommending it to all my author friends.
Shannon
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful tool of a book, with meat and bones for authors at any stage in their process. It highlights the truth that, from the most to the least published, all writers are authors in progress. 2 thumbs way up, highly recommend.
Leah
May 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is an absolute gem. Over 50 essays of resources, encouragement, and real talk for writers at every stage of the journey, from writers who've been (and maybe still are) there.

2017 Reading Challenge Category: A book with a subtitle.
Renée
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It was a really excellent series of essays from writers representing all corners of the authorial landscape. Helpful for newbies and veterans alike, especially if you're wondering where to get started or whether it's worth continuing. Would recommend in a heartbeat.
Tory
May 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing-books
This collection of essays on writing and the writing life was excellent and covered a huge range of subjects. It was helpful to hear so many writers talk about their journeys and give advice on all aspects of the publishing business.
Bjørn Larssen
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The most useful resource – or rather collection of resources – I have read in my life. If you're a writer, aspiring writer, or aspiring to be an aspiring writer, get it.
Marta Pelrine-Bacon
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is packed full of advice. Wherever you are on your author journey, there's something that will help. A few of the pieces actually made me see things in a new light and have inspired me to handle my own writerly issues differently. So, it's a good addition to your writing bookshelf.
Elaine Burnes
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Technically I haven't finished this, but the way it's formatted, you'll have it on your desk forever and refer to whichever part you need in the moment. I've also read enough to know this is exactly what I need. Why just today, I perused the sections on plotting vs. pantsing and "Write Like You Mean It" about finding the time and motivation to write and making the most of what you have. I've long been a fan of the Writer Unboxed blog and attended their UnConference in Salem, Mass., this year. Th ...more
Christina
rated it liked it
Apr 03, 2019
Lee
rated it liked it
Jul 10, 2018
Carly Twelve
rated it it was amazing
Jan 17, 2018
The Pingles
rated it it was amazing
Nov 04, 2016
Ann Scott
rated it did not like it
Oct 29, 2016
Helen Savore
A good collection of words of advice in how to pursue publishing. It felt a lot like I was having a conversation with some of these folks over a cup of coffee or cocoa maybe. Nice, casual, real. Definitely worth a look
Agent Black
rated it liked it
Apr 09, 2018
Jenel Cope
rated it really liked it
Jun 25, 2019
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Therese's second novel, The Moon Sisters, was published by Crown (Penguin Random House) in March 2014, received starred reviews from Booklist and Library Journal, and was named one of the Best Books of 2014 by Library Journal.

Her debut novel, The Last Will of Moira Leahy, was published in 2009 by Shaye Areheart books (Random House), and became a Target Breakout Book.

Therese is the co-founder of W
...more

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