Author Archives: quillsandqueries

About quillsandqueries

My editing experience includes a wide variety of books, articles, and commentary in both fiction and non-fiction. I work with authors of novels and short stories, students preparing for their dissertations, and corporate clients who publish in the financial and education sectors.

The Mark of a Good Writer

You’ll find plenty of opinions about what makes good writing, but there are as many opinions as there are readers, and they range from technical critiques to personal raves, with many being a mix of the two. You probably won’t … Continue reading

Posted in Theory and Discussion, Writing and Editing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

On Working for Free

If there are people making money from your writing, then you should be one of those people. Continue reading

Posted in Publishing, Writing and Editing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Hopping the Fence: When an Editor Writes

I’m an editor. I get a manuscript, dissertation, or textbook and I dig into the words to root out fluff and transplant content from areas where its meaning is obscured in shadow to places where the light hits it more … Continue reading

Posted in Personal, Publishing, Writing and Editing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

How Not To Be a Naked Emperor

Doubt feels awful, even when it’s just a minor, nagging little thought in the back of your mind. After all, what if you really did leave the stove on and burn down the house while you were at work? Even small doubts can have dire consequences if they are justified. The problem is, many of them aren’t justified, but it’s not always easy to know when you should invite doubt in for tea and when to shut the door on it. However, if you’re going to be a writer, you need to make friends with your doubt. Continue reading

Posted in Writing and Editing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

How Real is Real Enough?

Realism is critical for good fiction writing, but speculative fiction demands some nonrealism, too. How do you find the right balance of realistic and nonrealistic features, and how do you make them work together harmoniously? Continue reading

Posted in Theory and Discussion, Writing and Editing | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Which Publishing Rabbit Hole Should You Fall Into?

There’s a lot of publishing advice that can help aspiring authors decide whether or not to self-publish or how to find the right agent or publisher, which is great news for aspiring authors. However, sorting through all that information can … Continue reading

Posted in Publishing, Writing and Editing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

True Literature or Not True Literature, That is the Wrong Question

Human beings enjoy a good story. Most people like some variety in the types of stories they engage with, and some people will read or watch pretty much anything. You would think that publishers would recognize this, but in book publishing, there is a long-standing and seemingly impenetrable divide between literary fiction and so-called genre (“popular”) fiction in general, and speculative fiction in particular. But is this distinction useful? Continue reading

Posted in Theory and Discussion | Leave a comment