89 votes

How can I contact JK Rowling for permission to publish my sequel for the Harry Potter series?

I'm sorry, but the chances of JK Rowling letting an amateur, unpublished writer use her ideas is zero. She and her partners have billions of dollars riding on the HP franchise. If she is tired of ...
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  • 92k
80 votes
Accepted

How to get my book taken seriously as a teenager?

You don't have to do anything special at all. First you will seek an agent, with a query letter. Look up on the Internet or in writing books on Amazon how to write a query letter. Do not mention your ...
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  • 92k
77 votes
Accepted

Is the first page of a novel really that important?

YES, the first page is vitally important. But probably not in the way you think. Don't bring the "thriller" up first. The first page (and first sentence, and paragraph) is important in the ...
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  • 92k
72 votes

Is it possible for an author to release a novel every week using dictation technology?

I can type at about 5K words per hour, but I can't write nearly that fast. I need to think of what's going on. I need to keep some sort of consistency, and I can't remember all the details. I need ...
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48 votes

How can I contact JK Rowling for permission to publish my sequel for the Harry Potter series?

In an interview, Stephen Fry (who has recorded the audio-book versions of the Harry Potter series from the start) recalled how, at a book-signing that J.K. Rowling was doing, there were ...
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47 votes
Accepted

Should I self-publish my novella on Amazon or try my luck getting publishers?

Unfortunately, the word count of your work means that traditional publishers will not be interested. Even well-established authors like Stephen King publish their novella-length work only as part of ...
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46 votes

Is it appropriate for me to write about the pandemic?

I see two separate issues here --your work, and who you are getting feedback from: There's nothing intrinsically wrong in being inspired by current events. People do that all the time, and some great ...
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40 votes

How would I go about censoring adult language in my book?

I like the technique that TvTropes calls the "narrative profanity filter". The basic idea is that instead of including adult language in the dialog, you describe the language in the narration: He ...
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  • 600
40 votes

I feel like people would mock me for trying to become an author at 12, what should I do?

I would say go for it! If you have the possibility of contacting a "proper author," there's no reason not to. If they get back to you or someone from their office does, that would be a huge ...
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39 votes

I feel like people would mock me for trying to become an author at 12, what should I do?

Your first publication will get harsh criticism whether you're 12, 21, or 120. The fact is, the only way to get good at something is to practice, and the only way to practice is to fail, repeatedly, ...
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  • 1,005
36 votes

Is it okay to publish a book at a young age?

There are no age restrictions on publishing - you may need to get someone else to sign contracts for you, but that's a minor detail. That said, it's pretty hard to get a book published, even for ...
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  • 12.8k
36 votes
Accepted

Should all books have page numbers?

Even if you don't intend to index your entries by page number, you'll annoy quite a few people if you omit page numbers. Librarians, who need to file number of pages, printers, who need page numbers ...
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  • 15.3k
35 votes
Accepted

Do living authors still get paid royalties for their old work?

In the US, an author holds the copyright to his work for all his life, and his heirs hold it for 70 years after his death, at which point the work becomes public domain. (source) In other countries ...
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32 votes

Want to publish unpublished work found in an auction storage unit

You cannot publish the work without permission. It was copyrighted the moment it was written. The fact that you 'purchased' the manuscript is no defence. By that token I could 'publish' all the books ...
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  • 5,233
29 votes
Accepted

How can I safely use "Thalidomide" in my novel while respecting the trademark?

Here is the entry for thalidomide in Merriam-Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary (1983): thalidomide n {phthalic acid + -id- (fr. imide) + -o- + imide} (1962) : a sedative and hypnotic drug ...
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29 votes

Is the first page of a novel really that important?

The first page of your novel is vitally important, but not necessarily because the action starts there. The first page, and first several pages, should: set your tone and reader expectations. In a ...
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  • 3,097
28 votes

Is it possible for an author to release a novel every week using dictation technology?

In theory this could be possible, but such an author would burn themselves out after a couple of days with such an intense schedule. A novel is more than just 100,000 words thrown together. There ...
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  • 751
28 votes

Should I self-publish my novella on Amazon or try my luck getting publishers?

I will disagree with the advice you received. The vast majority of self-published fiction earns nothing, or at best some friend and family sympathy purchases. The case is even worse for un-marketed ...
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  • 92k
27 votes
Accepted

Can fanfics be bestsellers?

The main obstacle to fanfics flooding the market is copyright. As long as the original author holds the copyright for their work, fanfics can only live as free stuff on the internet. (Or, as Kirk ...
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27 votes

Can you pitch an outline?

As Mark says, not without a track record of one bestseller after another. But if you got that, you should be pretty rich, so why bother? Rowling and Stephen King probably don't worry about stuff like ...
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  • 92k
26 votes

When do you stop "pushing" a book?

The most likely explanation is that your queries are poorly written, or the agents you are querying are poorly suited to your work (or feel they are after reading your query). If you are getting ...
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  • 92k
25 votes

Can I use my legal name as the protagonist if I'm pitching my book to traditional publishers under a pen name?

Besides the real world repercussions Arcanist Lupus has mentioned, there are story-internal considerations to be made. In fiction, names carry meaning and therefore certain names fit certain ...
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  • 251

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