The Business of Creative Writing with Lisa Bubert

Practicing the craft is how we become writers; knowing how to “sell” that craft is how we go pro.

Your Instructor: Lisa Bubert, a writer/editor with over 10 years in the industry.

Where: Online — Available everywhere!

When: September 9, 2021 - October 7, 2021

Enrollment: 20

Price: $299

Class Description

Survive the trenches in the literary war to go pro.

Practicing the craft is how we become writers; knowing how to “sell” that craft is how we go pro.

In this four-week course students will learn: different accountability and productivity methods for their work styles; how to effectively submit to journals, pitch editors, query agents, and how to gracefully follow-up with promising leads; the ins and outs of marketing, networking etiquette, and how to be a literary citizen.

Your leader in this battle: Lisa Bubert. A writer and editor with over ten years experience in the literary industry. She knows what it takes to get to the next level, and she will be there with you in the trenches when all seems lost. Lisa will help you plot a successful course of action to achieve your goal of becoming a professional writer. 

What This Class Covers

Week One: Definitions and Expectations

Lecture: A discussion of what to expect from this class as a whole and on a personal level. Goals vs. accountability. Definitions will be laid out for the basic avenues of literary publishing—literary journals vs. magazines, indie press vs. Big Five vs. self-publishing, etc. We will also explore different accountability tools for the toolbox and brainstorming ideas to move the needle.

(This lesson will include an extensive supplemental reading list provided by the instructor.)

Assignment: If you don’t already have goals, you’re going to make some! What do you want to see yourself do this year? Write and submit at least three new pieces? Pitch to three editors? Finish that novel draft?

Please come up with three attainable and controllable goals (I.E.: not “get published”) to share with the group. These goals will be your North Star for the rest of the class, and we will check in each week to see how you’re progressing.

 

Week Two: Publishing Short Fiction and Essays

Lecture: Learn where to find publications and how to determine fit, the importance of following submission guidelines, how to write cover letters and format submissions, how to follow-up gracefully, read the rejections, and most importantly—how to get paid! Examples of successful pitches will be provided as guideposts. 

(This lesson will include an extensive supplemental reading list provided by the instructor.)

Assignment: If you have work ready to submit, go ahead and find five great fits for that work. Write the cover letter and format the submission. Next week, we’ll hit the submit button!

If you have non-fiction that is suitable for pitching, write the pitch! Bonus points if you can find the emails of the editor you’d like to pitch to.

If you do not yet have anything to submit or pitch, get yourself organized. Join Duotrope or make your submission or pitch spreadsheet, and get prepped for when you do eventually submit.

 

Week Three: Book Publishing

Lecture: We will discuss Self-Publishing vs. Traditional, Indie vs. Big Five, when and why to get an agent, the query process, the “shopping” process, the deal and more — advances, royalties, sub-rights — you name it.

(This lesson will include an extensive supplemental reading list provided by the instructor.)

Assignment: If you have written a book, try writing the query letter. If you aren’t ready for the query yet (though there’s good reason to write the pitch before the book!), try identifying some comparative titles for your work. These must have been published within the past five years. No bestsellers! You can even pitch an idea for a book.

 

Week Four: Everything Else

Lecture: In week 4 we will cover everything we missed — what happens after the agent in publishing, from on-sub to book deal, and pitching basics for editors. Literary citizenship and how to build a network. Finding, joining and creating critique groups. Seeking volunteer opportunities— first readers, bookshops, major literary events. And of course the all important How to Social Media.

Assignment: Submit any questions you may have for the final discussion. Let’s follow each other on social media! Consider making a crit group, either out of colleagues in this class, or via a collection of other writers you admire. You never know until you ask.

Goals Of This Class

  • Define the basic avenues of literary publishing and determine your goals
  • Explore publication venues and their guidelines in preparation for submission
  • Learn the When, Where, and the How of pitching etiquette 
  • Build a network and become a literary citizen
About Our Classes Class FAQs