I Lost My Poem & How to Avoid Writing Scams

November 2017, I entered a writing competition. Within the month, I received a letter in the mail stating I was a finalist, and they wanted to publish my poem in their anthology.

I was ecstatic.

I ran into my parent’s room, grinning ear to ear, because I WAS GOING TO BE PUBLISHED! I immediately signed my poem away (even sent the letter using priority mail), only to find out they were a vanity press, and I would never see my poem in print

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Who The Hell Am I Anyway & Author Anger

Well, this isn’t the first time, but I was harassed online. Usually, it’s for random reasons, like the man who sent a message to my Harry Potter cosplay blog telling me to drink bleach. I asked him why I was so angry, but got little answers other than the typical “you should die” and other vulgar statements. However, this time, I’m not sure exactly what set my angry person off.

I am a part of a small writing group, and one of its members was venting about querying. I sent her a message explaining why it is necessary but left on an encouraging note. That woman didn’t respond, but boy did someone else.

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Your Comp Titles Are Bad (and so is this blog title)

I read a lot of query letters for my internship. I read so many, one of my favorite past times is showing my roommates the outrageous amount of emails I have in my inbox. Now, I have never rejected a query based on a comparison (or comp) title. Are there great books with poor comp titles in their queries? Yes. But I do think comp titles are an important part of the query. Comp titles not only show what the vibe of your book is but where it fits into the market. An author with good, relevant comp titles, shows they know what they’re doing. So, in the vein of How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, here is what not to do.

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