The essential resource for writers
Join thousands of successful writers when you subscribe to The Writer magazine. Each month The Writer is full of features you can use to improve your writing, including before-and-after examples of improved writing, more literary markets than ever before, practical solutions for writing problems, selected literary magazine profiles, tips from famous authors and hands-on advice.
Get Started: 4 key factors to estimate project time
Whether informing a potential client or just trying to balance your workflow, every writer needs project-planning tools.
Breakthrough: From the little blog that could, a book contract
Just for fun, the writer started pitching McSweeney’s. Then the editors gave him a blog. Then the blog led to a book.
Off the Cuff: Writing as a form of play
Sure, the act of creating can be difficult, but it’s also a joyous
exploration, our writer says. Plus, see Lori Ann Bloomfield’s sidebar
for a series of first lines to inspire your own stories.
Poet to Poet: Expressing the inexpressible
Spiritually themed poetry grapples with paradoxes, mysteries and moments of truth.
Get the most out of the AWP conference
Here’s a guide for new and returning attendees to the huge annual affair for writers.
Interview: Persistence and artistry
Charles Baxter, one of our top practitioners of literary fiction,
stubbornly channeled his despair over repeated rejections of his work
2010 Short-Story Contest Winner: 'Footnotes and Footlights'
Enjoy the bittersweet narration of an aging, one-time actress—the narrator of The Writer’s 2010 short-story contest winner. Read the entire story and judge Susan Breen’s comments, and learn more about its writer.
Make your characters' thoughts dramatic
What goes on in your characters’ minds is a valuable tool you can use to reveal people, build tension, and more.
Cover Story: A pyramid approach to novel writing
Do you have a fresh idea for a novel but are feeling too intimidated to
take the first step? Or have you started and soon become overwhelmed?
The author has developed—and successfully used—a seven-step approach
that guides you to the finish.
Author Profile: Hooking us on crooks
Elmore Leonard, a giant of crime fiction, looks back on a long career
crafting novels full of great street talk and dry wit and easy on the
Create your own MFA in 5 steps
If you can’t enroll in a degree program, consider developing a
self-guided curriculum to reach your writing goals. The writer offers
tips on finding your way.
How to market your self-published book
A writer who’s had a good experience with two print-on-demand novels shares some promotional advice with you.
Let your imagination play
The late Jorge Luis Borges’ advice for writers speaks to the shortcomings—and the prison—of exactitude.
Freelance Success: Know your publishing options
Traditional publishing, self-publishing and POD each have their own sets of pros and cons.
Market Focus: Travel writers head for regionals
To ease into the niche, target local travel magazines and build rapport with editors.
Literary Spotlight Subtropics
This month’s spotlight is on the literary journal Subtropics, describing its tone, preferences and contributors.
A story in a glance
Celebrating the independent spirit of Zora Neale Hurston
Ask The Writer
How do I know when I have enough short stories to make a book?
Marilyn preferred books
WriteStuff Book Reviews
How we read in the digital age
Review of The Lost Art of Reading: Why Books Are So Important in a Distracted Time by David L. Ulin
Mystical yet practical screenwriting tips
Review of Essentials of Screenwriting: The Art, Craft and Business of Film and Television Writing by Richard Walter
month, a list of agencies, and tips from agents at Bradford Literary
Agency and Liza Dawson Associates. Plus, information on conferences and
How I Write: Dani Shapiro
For memoirist and novelist Dani Shapiro, the messy freedom of developing
an idea initially in longhand is actually quite appealing.