7 Things I Heard at the Book Festival

VA Festival bookmark2Seven intriguing things I heard at the Virginia Festival of the Book in Charlottesville, this week.

  1. “Toni Morrison is our greatest living writer.” Alice Hoffman, Author
  2. Don’t necessarily write what you know. “Write what you can feel and imagine.” Hoffman
  3. Hoffman gets up at 4:45 a.m. to write because early in the morning, she says, “My censor is off. I am not as hypercritical and I am more in touch with my subconscious.”
  4. One difference between crafting a short story and writing a novel is that in the story “there is no room for adverbs.” You must find and use “more precise verbs.” Heather Weidner, Author.
  5. Publicity planning for a new book begins in earnest four to six months before its release, but authors can help the process by thinking ahead. “Develop the story behind the book.” What made you want to write it? How did you become an author? Who is your audience? How can you get your book and yourself in front of them?  Sharyn Rosenblum, Vice President, Senior Director of Media Relations for William Morrow
  6. When an agent says “‘I didn’t connect'” to a work you have submitted s/he means “‘the character didn’t come alive and connect with the reader.'” It’s not well enough written and “your writing got between the reader and the character.” Jeff Kleinman, Folio Literary Management
  7. Bestselling author Lisa Scottoline has an annual event at her home for members of book clubs who have read one of her works. “If you read me, you know me.” Lisa Scottoline

Ever been to a book festival? A writers conference? What’s the most intriguing thing you heard? Said? Click on Leave a Comment below.

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