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Question
Dear Ms. Taylor - I'm doing market research about the new rise in books about writing for a dissertation at Falmouth Arts College in Cornwall, England.  I'm interested in knowing what publishers look for when choosing which books about writing to publish.  Does the author need a certain number of publications already under his/her belt?  Do you think they are essential or even helpful to writers?  Do you see a danger in marketing these 'self-help' books for writers that will stop aspiring writers from reading literature for inspiration?  thanks for your help.  patrick

Answer
1. Does the author need a certain number of publications already under his/her belt?

That does help. Publishers especially like it in nonfiction when you have a body of work to establish you as an expert in your field. I don't think it's absolutely necessary. Sometimes a topic will just catch an editor's eye because it's well-written or a hot topic, not based on the author's experience.

2. Do you think they are essential or even helpful to writers?

Like I said they're not essential. I think the work should stand on its own. If you base a publishing decision on a writer's past work, you might pigeonhole the writer in one genre and not allow them to experiment.

3. Do you see a danger in marketing these 'self-help' books for writers that will stop aspiring writers from reading literature for inspiration?

Personally I like self-help. I think writers should be big readers and read everything including self-help and literature. Any writer that wants to learn and grown should read everything and not stick to one particular area. They should form their own opinions about what they read and not worry about how literary it is.

Niki

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Niki Taylor

Expertise

What are good writing books? How can I write a writing book? Who publishes writing books?

Experience

I'm a writer/book reviewer from North Carolina. For almost three years, I have been freelance writing. My website is http://www.nikianntaylor.com

Publications
Book on freelance writing at http://tinyurl.com/eche

Quiz writer for http://www.quizilla.com

Writes for http://www.notyetretired.com

Contributor to Conquering Panic and Anxiety Disorders:
Success Stories, Strategies, and Other Good News. Hunter
House.

Book review published in March 2002 Lambda Book Report.

Book Review published in August 2002 The Writer.

Article published in Pediatrics for Parents(Vol. 20, No. 1)


Book reviewer article published in January 2003 issue of AWP
Job List

Book Review Published in April 2003 Good Old Boat

Writing-related article published in May 24, 2003 Funds for
Writers Newsletter(Digest Number 210)

Book Review published in Dovetail
Article published in Openmind, November/December 2003
Article published in WritersWeekly.com: 12/17/03
Book review in FOOD WRITING A Bi-Weekly E-zine Vol. I, Issue 12 January 13, 2004 www.food-writing.com
Teaches online class on book reviewing at http://class.universalclass.com/bookreviews

Education/Credentials
East Carolina University, Bachelor's of Arts in English with
a concentration in Writing, 1994
East Carolina University, Master's in Library Science, 1998
East Carolina University, Working on Master's of Arts in
English in Creative Writing Program, Jan. 1999-May 2000

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