Recent Posts

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Report on M.M. Buckner Presentation

Nearly twelve people were at the M.M. Buckner author chat at Barnes and Noble in Cool Springs on Thursday, January 28, 2010. Living Writers Collective members present included Mary Ann Weakley, Jennifer Ballard, and Danielle Sisk.

M.M. Buckner asked if we were writers and what we wrote. She had people in the audience talk with each other and ask/answer questions about their own experiences.

She recommended the Writers Market web site as the most comprehensive and up-to-date resource. Buckner said it was smarter to contact a publisher first, and get an agent after you have a publisher. Get an agent to handle deals and rights. Small publishers are good to consider because they are more welcoming to new and unagented writers.

Buckner said writing a synopsis is a great exercise to “look at the bones of your book,” to see gaps and what doesn’t follow, and to review and revise.

Buckner advised using friends as readers. No matter what kind of books they read (or write), they will have valuable input. Joining a critique group is great for growing a thicker skin, learning to handle rejection, using criticism to improve, and getting braver about sharing work. When published, writers get lots of criticism and negative reviews. If you are part of a group it's important to participate and give feedback.. If you show an interest in the work of others, they will do the same for you.

Buckner shared a lot of well-known things about publishing:
  • It’s a slow business.
  • Don’t expect to make money at first.
  • Self publishing is a lot of work.
  • Don’t send a revised version of the same work to a publisher who rejected it unless asked to.
  • Always double check information and updates on publishers' websites before submitting work.
  • The publishing industry is changing

Buckner said keep writing to improve - practice does work and make a difference. Also attend meetings and workshops, and keep reading and learning more about writing. is a great way to meet local groups specific to particular genres.

Planning is a good way to get familiar with plot and characters. Use surface plots and underlying themes to hold readers' attention.

Bucker said blogging is useful for promoting and networking but requires time and commitment.

Posted by: LWC member Jennifer Ballard - Visit Jennifer's website at

No comments: