Are You Connected?

What’s your first thought when you hear that question? I’ll bet it’s one of two things: connected to the internet, OR connected to influential people. Noah Webster was going for the second one. He wanted people like Ben Franklin and George Washington to endorse his plan for reforming English spelling, promote it, even legislate it. By golly, he would make people appreciate his ideas. For him, it was all about connections. AN INCONVENIENT ALPHABET, BEN FRANKLIN AND NOAH WEBSTER’S SPELLING REVOLUTION spotlights the relationship between Ben and Noah. Their connection was based on their love of language and efforts to educate the population. Working together, Noah ultimately learned that the suc

Building a Writing Career—While You're Waiting for Your First Contract

Waiting is a big part of the writing life. You wait for inspiration, for editors and agents to respond, for your book to sell, and finally for your book to be published. All that waiting can take years! You’ll want to keep writing and submitting while you’re waiting, of course. But it’s also smart to put some time and effort into building your writing career—even before you sign that first contract. I waited six years to sell a children’s trade book—a little longer than average, but not an unusual length of time. During that time, however, I authored around 80 books for the educational market, published stories in children’s magazines, and gave presentations at schools and writers’ events. T

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