A must-read resource: Writer’s Yearbook 2017

In so many ways, I think now is the best time to be a writer. If you’re hoping to write for publication, there are countless ways to get your  writing out to the public, whether that’s through blogging, simply sharing your writing with others in a group setting, or publishing your articles, short stories, nonfiction books, or novels. Another reason I think now is the best time to be a writer? More resources. From books and websites to blogs and Pinterest boards (yes, there are Pinterest boards about writing), writing resources abound. One of my favorites is Writer’s Digest and particularly their Writer’s Yearbook.

I’ve subscribed to the Writer’s Digest monthly magazine for years, and I learn something from each issue I pick up. Sometimes the author profile inspires me. Other times, I learn a trick or two to help me avoid a particular writing pitfall, such as using clichés or writing unbelievable plot twists. I enjoy the letters section, because I like to know which pieces inspired other readers, and I also enjoy the features on first-time authors.

The Writer’s Yearbook is one of their special issues and not part of the regular magazine subscription, but it is well worth the $6.99 cover price. Here are just a few of the things I learned from the 2017 Yearbook:

• The latest (2015) figures showed print book sales up 3 percent, and one reason for this is the millions of adult coloring books that were sold!

• I learned nine questions I should ask a publisher before signing a book contract. The article suggests asking, for instance, how soon you can see your cover design.

• The most helpful article, though, was the one on the 101 Best Websites for Writers. I found quite a few I’d never heard of, sites that inspire creativity, offer writing advice, assist in finding an agent, and much more.

Even if you don’t subscribe to Writer’s Digest—and I’d certainly suggest that anyone seriously interested in writing do so—this annual issue is one that should be a part of every writer’s library.

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