External Link: 4 Timeless Writing Tips from ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ Author Madeleine L’Engle

Back in 1962, Madeleine L’Engle gifted children everywhere with her sci-fi fantasy classic A Wrinkle in Time. The book became a classic and continues to be enjoyed by young readers with over 10 million copies sold. On March 9, Disney is releasing a movie, based on the book, starring big names like Oprah, Chris Pine and Reese Witherspoon.

Like so many writers, L’Engle had a hard time finding a publisher. The book didn’t fit neatly into a genre category, and the concepts in the story were way ahead of their time. There were elements of quantum physics, the problem of evil, and it has a young female protagonist in a science fiction book, which was pretty much unheard of at that time. Aside from the content, she believed her troubles were also because people underestimate children. “They think you have to write differently,” she said. “You don’t. You just have to tell a story.”

In all, 26 different publishers rejected A Wrinkle in Time. L’Engle had almost given up when she was introduced to John C. Farrar of Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Although his publishing company did not publish children’s books at the time, he liked her book and published it with the caveat that the author should not expect much public reaction. She, in turn, had it added to her contract that the company could have the rights to the book forever, anywhere in the universe, except the Andromeda galaxy.

During her lifetime, L’Engle published over 60 books for children and adults. Read on to learn four powerful lessons from her experiences and expertise.

Read more at Writer’s Digest.

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External Link: Writers Who Don’t Read

At the New Yorker Book Bench Macy Halford recently posed an important question: “What is wanting to write without wanting to read like? It’s imperative that we figure it out, because Giraldi’s right: It’s both crazy and prevalent among budding writers.” She was echoing a question asked by debut novelist William Giraldi who in the course of teaching writing at Boston University has noticed a growing number of aspiring writers disinclined to read. This unfortunate trend inspired an open-ended analogy:

Wanting to write without wanting to read is like wanting to ____ without wanting to ____.

The New Yorker commenterati — unsurprisingly, a clever bunch — came up with some great analogies but none of them touched on the bigger question: How can anyone claim to be interested in writing without being serious about reading? If Giraldi’s observation rings true across teenagers and 20-somethings then what does this say about culture at large?

Read more at Salon.com.

Review: Prism World

My mentor (and proofreader) gives his opinion of my new book. For better or for worse, I appreciate his honest feedback and have every intention of improving my weak points in future stories. Thank you Dr. Robinson!

The Great Adventure

51uac5k9cSL._SY346_Prism World by Lyn Gilleland (398 pages). Available on Amazon.

It’s really hard to be objective when it comes to reviewing a book by someone you know. And yet you as a reader, as well as the author, would not expect any less from me. And so I find myself reviewing a book that I consider a breakthrough for the author, while still having its pitfalls. While the author has written other books, for all intents and purposes, I would consider this a first novel.

The story is set on a world that is very much like our own, yet small clues tell you it is in a time circa 1940s to 1960s. Biplanes still fly, people shoot revolvers, and the dress code is similar to what I might have seen when (or before) I was a child. With that in mind, the circumstance is not retro. The main…

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