The Oxford Comma
“There are people who embrace the Oxford comma and those who don’t, and I’ll just say this: never get between these people when drink has been taken.”
– Lynne Truss, Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
Infographic via onlineschools.com 


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‘If you allow your people to talk, they will express themselves in a way that the writer might not have thought of.’
Joyce Carol Oates is the critically acclaimed author of over forty novels including The Falls and We Were the Mulvaneys. In this video recorded by fora.tv, Oates discusses how a writer can develop realistic characters, using examples from her 2007 novel The Gravedigger’s Daughter. She also outlines a useful creative writing exercise that she provides her students.


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How to get permission to use song lyrics in your book

A guest post by Virginia Lloyd. Virginia is an Australian literary agent, editor and freelance writer. Sydney-born, she currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Two of my clients have been surprised recently to learn that they are responsible for obtaining permission to reproduce song lyrics in their respective novels. I’m sorry to break it to you, authors, but if you want to reproduce anything by another artist in your book – a painting, a few lines from a poem, song lyrics, a photograph – you have to identify who owns the copyright and contact that person (often a company or a literary estate) for permission to do so.

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Understand the Key Book Publishing Paths (infographic)Click image to enlarge and zoom

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We have seen this advice posted in a number of places around the internet and thought it was too good not to share. It was first published in the postscript pages of the paperback edition of Padgett Powell’s The Interrogative Mood: A Novel? published in 2009.

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