Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thursday Review—The 11 Secrets of Getting Published

I was first introduced to Mary DeMuth when I read her book Watching the Tree Limbs a couple of years ago. But it wasn't until I noticed friends re-tweeting her tweets (@MaryDemuth) and liking posts on Facebook that I discovered what a friend Mary DeMuth is, to both the new and not-so-new writer.

She has taken a variety of posts from her blog and compiled them into an e-book, The 11 Secrets of Getting Published.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, so I today I give you 11 Reasons to Download 11 Secrets
  1. It's cheap. Most writers I know wouldn't pass up a penny on the sidewalk. At the same time, most writers I know aren't above plunking down $4.99 for a peppermint mocha either. Um. Okay. So maybe that's just me. Regardless, this is no twenty-page e-book. There's a hefty quantity of quality content. And it won't add an inch to your waistline.
  2. It's an e-book. Yes, I'm the queen of the obvious, but this is a key point. I don't own a Kindle, Nook, or iPad. I read e-books on my little iTouch while feeding babies and waiting in carlines. E-books are a great way to stuff your brain with writing knowledge whenever you have a spare second.
  3. Mary was an English teacher. She dispenses some gentle English teacher love and a grammar lesson or two. You might not enjoy it, but you need it.
  4. She recommends writing “nekkid.”
  5. She writes fiction. This book hits a variety of topics including purple prose, killing adverbs, cliches, sentence structure, weak verbs, and head hopping.
  6. She writes non-fiction. You'll find wisdom on querying and writing proposals for everything from newspaper and magazine articles to full-length books.
  7. She uses the word “wonky.”
  8. She's passionate. It shines through on every page.
  9. She's honest. This is not a “follow these 11 steps and you will be published” book. She doesn't gloss over how tough the industry is.
  10. She wasn't an overnight success. As much as we would all love to have our first book fought over by the major houses and spend three years on the bestseller's list, the reality is that most successful writers spent years honing their craft. She did. It gives me hope.
  11. Her advice is for both unpublished and published writers. If you've already landed an agent and held your book in your hands, you still need to read this book. There's great advice for the mid-list author peppered throughout. 

Oh—you thought we were done? Well, when you get to the end of the book, you'll discover—oh, never mind. I think I'll keep that a secret!

Have you read The 11 Secrets of Getting Published? What was your favorite piece of advice?

Don't forget to join the conversation!

Lynn Huggins Blackburn has been telling herself stories since she was five and finally started writing them down. On her blog Out of the Boat she writes about faith and family while her blog Perpetual Motion documents the joys and challenges of loving and rearing a child with special needs. A graduate of Clemson University, Lynn lives in South Carolina where she writes, reads, knits, takes care of three amazing children, one fabulous man and one spoiled rotten Boston Terrier.
Follow Lynn on Twitter @lynnhblackburn


  1. I have several of Mary's books, but not that one. Thanks, I'll check it out.

  2. I love that you love that I wrote wonky. :) Thanks for the great review!

  3. Karen - you'll love it! Thanks for stopping by.
    Mary - It's a great word! Thanks for the FB/Twitter mentions. :-)

  4. Karen, thanks for stopping by, I was so excited when I found out Lynn was reviewing on of Mary's books!
    Mary, I'm totally pumped that you stopped by. You're such a blessing to so many of us! Lynn is an amazing writing and I'm glad you got to see a sample!
    Lynn, thanks again for another home run review! You are SUCH a blessing!

  5. Mary has always seemed so approachable and down to earth. I've always appreciated that about her! Wonky.
    That's a fun word!

  6. I have the book but I am ashamed to say that I haven't had time to read it through. I know it is filled with great information and I have it on my to do list.

  7. You have inspired me to buy it for sure -- thank you! I just met Mary in person at Relevant -- excited to read her e-book now.

  8. Thanks for the scoop, Lynn. It is a joy and a privilege to know Mary and see her servant's heart first hand. We are blessed!

  9. I've not finished this book yet, but it's worth bypassing a peppermint mocha. Mary's Web site and free downloads are also a treat! I love your take on the book, Lynn. And I'm with you, anyone who uses the word wonky is a fan of mine. :)