Book Expo 2013: Trends and Highlights

Every year at Book Expo America (BEA) one of my primary jobs at the show is trend-spotting, especially now that DIY MFA has begun featuring more guest content on our site. Book Expo is the main place where I connect with authors, publishers and industry professionals that we will feature over the coming year. But… Read more »

Lessons From My First BEA

Book Expo America is the biggest book conference in the country. It’s where agents, editors, publicists and authors all gather together with readers to talk about everyone’s favorite thing—books. It almost reads like a Dr. Suess poem – old books, new books, read books, blue books. Okay. There weren’t actually any blue books. Not that… Read more »

7DayStory Begins Today!

The 7DayStory is a new short story writing challenge. I’ve teamed up with Julie Duffy from StoryADay May we’ve put together this fun writing challenge for you. The 7DayStory Challenge officially opens its doors today but you can jump in at any time. Here’s How the Challenge Will Work: Write and revise a story over… Read more »

Introducing: The 7DayStory Challenge!

You don’t write because someone told you to write. You write because you MUST, because you can’t NOT write. But that doesn’t mean you must write alone. Next week, we’re teaming up with our friends over at and hosting a week-long short story challenge called 7DayStory. The idea is simple: just write and revise… Read more »

Self-Publishing Insights: Q&A With Victoria Noe

I first met Victoria Noe in a writer’s mastermind group and was immediately struck by her vision and drive. Viki has a specific group of people she wants to reach: people who have experienced the death of a friend. While there might be many grief books on the market, few–if any–that talk about grief from… Read more »

Self-Publishing Insights: Q&A with Eric DelaBarre

I had the pleasure of meeting Eric DelaBarre at Writer’s Digest Conference East (WDCE), where he spoke on several panels about his experience in self-publishing his middle grade novel SALTWATER TAFFY. Today he joins us as the first author in our Self-Publishing Insights Q&A Series. What I thought was especially interesting about Eric’s self-publishing experience… Read more »

5 Writing Lessons I Learned from Being an Editor

In January, I started my own short story zine. Ever since, I’ve been reading my way out of a steady pile of submissions. What’s more, I’m reading these stories with a new perspective—while I usually read for pleasure, as an editor, I now have to make judgments about each story. What makes a story good? Which will… Read more »

4 Ways Blogging Will Make You a Better Writer

Today’s guest article comes from Dan Blank, Founder of Dan was one of the people instrumental in helping me turn DIY MFA into what it is today. Dan especially helped me find my direction for DIY MFA and organize the online presence, including the blog. Dan works with writers at all stages of their… Read more »

Business Writing: Two Important Lessons

It’s been a while since I’ve shown my face at DIY MFA, and that is because I have been full-time, honest-to-Zeus employed – as a writer. No, I’m not getting paid to spin tales of whimsy and fantasy (yet). I’m a content writer and editor for a small business in San Diego. Switching gears to business writing was… Read more »