The Return of the Saturday Grab Bag!

4 Dec


Hey all! It’s been a month since the last Saturday Grab Bag (can you believe it?), but it feels good to be putting them together again. I just wanted to include a quick little note saying thanks to everyone for all the wonderful congratulatory comments while I was away getting hitched – and that it feels GREAT to be back!

Vanessa Di Gregorio (Campbell!)



Here are some great links on writing, the industry, and all things book related. Some are serious, and some are just downright hilarious. We highly recommend you read them!

  • How to Get 100% Full-Request Rate
  • – Warning: you will laugh hysterically. And you will laugh out loud. If there is one link you should click and read in this entire post, it is this one. And then you will know exactly how to get agents to fall over their feet to sign you.

  • So You Want to Write a Novel
  • – A Youtube video that will make you laugh!

  • ‘T’ Shirts
  • – Attention all typography lovers! These aren’t your ordinary t-shirts – these are t-shirts that pay homage to different typographies! You need to click this link to really see what I mean.

  • Publishing 911
  • – And… more hilarity! A blog post featuring a ‘transcript’ between the Operator at Publishing 911, and the various callers. Read it: you’ll love it.

  • James Frey’s Fiction Factory
  • – Okay okay. Time to get serious here, folks. You’ve probably already heard about this, but for those who haven’t, get ready to be appalled. Frey’s controversial publishing company, Full Fathom Five, is hiring authors – and taking advantage of them.

  • Definitive List of Clichéd Dialogue
  • – Yes, that’s right. A list of clichéd dialogue. (And you know what… I’m totally guilty of some of those lines in my past works. Who knows… there might be some in my current WIP! Dun dun dunnn).

  • One-Trick Pony
  • – This is a great post! And looks at something that most (if not all) writers worry about at some point; that you’re just a one-trick pony.

  • 10 Ways to Create a Plot Twist
  • – I don’t know about you, but I’m a HUGE fan of lists; and this article delivers! Awesome post (complete with Star Wars reference, too!).

  • I Value The Arts
  • – This was a special request from one of our readers in the UK. I Value The Arts is an online petition against the cutting of funding for the arts in the UK. So if you’re interested in joining the cause to protect the arts, you can register and show your support on this site.




“Sure, it’s simple, writing for kids… Just as simple as bringing them up.”

— Ursula K. LeGuin

“This manuscript of yours that has just come back from another editor is a precious package. Don’t consider it rejected. Consider that you’ve addressed it ‘to the editor who can appreciate my work’ and it has simply come back stamped ‘Not at this address’. Just keep looking for the right address.”

— Barbara Kingsolver



What We’re Reading:

Vanessa: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Sammy: The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

Sarah: Changeless by Gail Carriger

Savannah: The Buffalo Soldier by Chris Bohjalian

Julie: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Susan: World War Z by Max Brooks

Mandy: Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly

Kat: Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Vee: Fury by Shirley Marr

Jenn: The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett

Biljana: Beowulf



Happy first weekend of December! If you’ve come across any great links/quotes, share them in the comments! And let us know what you’re reading, too! (We love discussing books!)



13 Responses to “The Return of the Saturday Grab Bag!”

  1. Adrienne December 4, 2010 at 12:16 AM #

    Hey, cool! Thanks for sharing–I’ll tell Ian you linked. 🙂

  2. CA Marshall December 4, 2010 at 12:25 AM #

    Jenn’s reading THE WEE FREE MEN!!!!!! I hope you love it! The entire Tiffany Aching series is AMAZING! (I just finished I SHALL WEAR MIDNIGHT and cried. CRIED.

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio December 4, 2010 at 5:10 PM #

      AHHH I still need to pick up that series!!! (So many books… so little time!)

  3. CA Marshall December 4, 2010 at 12:32 AM #

    Oh, and great to have you back, Vanessa! ❤

  4. Laura E. Wardle December 4, 2010 at 4:05 PM #

    Just wanted to say thank you for sharing the “I Value The Arts” link. Likely wouldn’t have found it otherwise, even those I’m English. 🙂

    Great grab bag, as always. 🙂

    • Laura E. Wardle December 4, 2010 at 4:05 PM #


    • Vanessa Di Gregorio December 4, 2010 at 5:09 PM #

      It’s really there because another one of our readers reached out and told us about it! But I know she’ll be glad to know that people are checking it out! 😀

      And thanks!

  5. Rosie G. December 4, 2010 at 6:08 PM #

    Hey, thank you very much for including the ‘I Value the Arts’ link, it was me who asked for it to be included and i am really glad that it has reached at least one person. So thank you LTWF 😀 xx

    • Vanessa Di Gregorio December 4, 2010 at 8:33 PM #

      Thanks for sharing the link with us, Rosie! 😀

  6. priscillashay December 4, 2010 at 9:47 PM #

    LOVE Fahrenheit 451!! and Kat’s reading Unwind again (FINALLY WOMAN :P)

    • Kat Zhang December 4, 2010 at 10:55 PM #

      Hehe 🙂 I finished it, too!

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