Helping Writers Achieve Their Dreams for Over 14 Years!
FROM THE EDITOR: Coffee on the Deck - Ramblings on the Writing Life

For Beginners:
    Getting Started
    Grammar & Skill-Building
    How to Win Contests
    The Writing Life
For Fiction Writers:
    General Fiction Tips
    Crafting Fabulous Fiction
For Nonfiction Writers:
    Freelancing Tips
    Travel Writing
    International Freelancing
    Creative Nonfiction
    Tech & Copywriting
More Writing Tips:
    Children's Writing
    Poetry & Greeting Cards
For Every Writer:
    Queries & Submissions
    The Writing Business
    Rights & Copyright
    Getting Published
    Promotion/Social Media

Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer

Queries, Pitches and Proposals

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Available in Paperback
and for Kindle!

Writing to Win: The Colossal Guide to Writing Contests
Newly Updated for 2012!!
by Moira Allen

Thousands of dollars in prize money is given to writers every year through contests and competitions. Each year, hundreds of literary magazines, universities, memorial funds, and publications seek out the best of the best -- the best poetry, the best fiction, the best essays and memoirs, the best books, the best children's literature, the best scripts and screenplays. And while winning cash is nice, winning a prestigious writing award can be an amazing boost to your writing career, perhaps even the entry ticket you need to get the attention of a publisher! Don't let these opportunities slip away. Writing to Win brings you details of nearly 1600 writing competitions, with all the information you need to know to help you prepare and submit just what the judges are looking for. You could spend hundreds of hours tracking down this information yourself--but we've done all the hard work for you! So spend those hours crafting that perfect story, poem, or article -- and go forth and win! The completely updated 2012 edition has over 450 completely new listings!

Some Reviews:

...with the multitude of contests out there, where does one start their search? Moira Allen of Writing World has an answer with her book Writing to Win: The Colossal Guide to Writing Contests. Weighing in at 350 pages, this book provides hundreds of contests for every style and level of writing imaginable, from short story competitions for unpublished science fiction writers to literary awards for experienced novelists... The advice at the beginning is alone worth the price of entry, and the listings are user friendly and browseable, allowing the reader to discover contests they might not find if they were actively searching for what they thought they wanted. -- Sean McLachlan, author

I have yet to find an online compendium of writing contests that compares to the one compiled by Ms. Allen. Because its listing are organized by writing type (poetry, short fiction, nonfiction, books, scripts and screenplays) and also by deadline (so that the author knows when to submit her work), Writing to Win is easy to use. And, with over 300 pages of listings, the book is probably as close to comprehensive as any resource like this can be.... it [also] offers plenty of good advice about how to prepare a story for submission as well pointers on how to determine whether a competition is legitimate or not. If you are at all interested in entering writing competitions, then I recommend this book. --Elle Scott, "Writing for Newbies"

"Awesome! A steal!" - Wendy Burt-Thomas, author of The Writer's Digest Guide to Query Letters

Available in Paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon!

Table of Contents

Chapter 1

Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer - 2nd Edition
by Moira Allen

Do you want to start earning money as a freelance writer, but just don't know where to start? Search no further; this is the book you need. It begins at the beginning, with tips on what you'll need to set up your office and your "business" (and make no mistake, freelance writing must be treated as a business if you hope to succeed). Then, it will show you where and how to find those elusive "ideas" ("What on earth can I write about?") and turn ideas into marketable topics. From there, this book will guide you in the steps necessary to locate appropriate markets, and guide you in constructing marketable articles.

But it doesn't stop there! You'll find out how to craft queries, pitches, column proposals, and articles for the international market. You'll learn how to protect your all-important intellectual property rights and copyright, how to negotiate a contract, and what to watch out for in a world full of sharks waiting to prey upon the unwary writer. You'll find out how to manage your writing business -- no more fears about being baffled by income and expenses, profit-and-loss spreadsheets, and tax time. (This book even helps take the fear out of audits.)

When you're ready to move on in your writing career, you'll find ways to expand into business writing, teaching, speaking, and nonfiction books. This new edition has an entire, newly written section on business and commercial writing, written by an expert in the field. It also helps you negotiate the electronic world via blogs, social networking, and your own writer's website.

Newly updated in 2010, How to Start Your Career as a Freelance Writer is an indispensable guide not just to "getting started," but to "keeping going" and, most of all, to "making it work." If you want to succeed as a freelance writer in these tough and competitive times, you need to know the ropes. This is the book that shows you the ropes.

Read the chapter on Income and Expenses online!

Check out the Reviews for the first edition!

Available in Paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon!

New York Journal of Books

Table of Contents

Chapter 1

The Writer's Guide to Queries, Pitches and Proposals - 2nd Edition
by Moira Allen

These days, the competition is tougher than ever for writers. So if you want to sell what you write, and sell MORE of what you write, you need to know how to pitch it. This book shows you how to craft targeted, dynamic pitches for articles, nonfiction books, fiction books, columns, business writing and much more. It covers traditional queries, electronic queries, multiple-pitch and quick-pitch queries, proposals, synopses, cold calling and a host of other techniques. Looking for an agent? Find out how to target one with a written query or a verbal pitch at a writer's conference. Need working capital? Find out how to apply for a grant!

The new edition, released in September 2010, not only updates the entire text of the original version but offers a wealth of new information, including how to pitch to international markets and how to pitch to greeting card companies. It is packed with even more samples of "queries that worked" in every category, so that you can see first-hand "how it's done."

This is the book you need to help you sell what you write - by getting an editor's attention the moment your pitch crosses his or her desk or e-mail inbox. Use this book to hook your editors - and hook sales!

Download Chapter 1 of the new edition in PDF format, or read sample chapters from the previous edition online:

Check out the Reviews for the first edition!

Electronic Edition $10.95

Paperback Edition $14.95

How to Write for Magazines
by Moira Allen

Why pay $100 for a writing class when it's all right here? This book includes my entire "Getting Started in Magazine Writing" online course -- lectures and exercises - for under $15. You'll find out how to research and select the perfect markets for your work -- and how to develop and tailor ideas for the markets you want to reach. Learn how to write a can't-miss query, research your article and conduct interviews, develop your article idea from broad subject categories to tightly focused topics, how to write the article itself, and how to format it for submission. This book also walks you through the issues of contracts and rights, and shows you what goes on behind the editor's desk! Plus, a special chapter on enhancing your article (and increasing your sales) with photos. Download a Sample Chapter.

Note: Much of the information in this book was incorporated into the new, second edition of Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer. If you already have that book, don't buy this one!

Other Books by Moira Allen:

Available on for $16.53.

Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet
by Moira Allen

In 2007, I celebrated the 20th year "in print" of the first book I ever wrote -- a book designed to help those who grieve the loss of a beloved animal companion. Drawing on the comments and experiences of pet owners across the U.S., this book covers the emotions of pet loss, personalized coping strategies to help you deal with grief, tips on helping the rest of the family cope (including other pets!), choosing when it's time to euthanize a pet (and tips on making this, if not easier, at least less stressful on you and your pet), suggestions on when and how to choose a new pet, and much more. It also covers how to deal with the "missing pet" (including tips on how to find a lost pet), how to provide for pets in your will, how to choose a pet cemetery and other "final disposition options," and how to help a friend cope with loss. This book won the Dog Writers of America "best book" award in 1998 and has helped thousands of pet owners deal with the grief of loss.

Check out the Reviews for this book!

Visit the Pet Loss Support Page for chapter excerpts, articles on pet loss, and more.

The Victorian Collection
edited by Moira Allen

Are you researching the Victorian period? Check out my growing collection of Victorian reprints, including e-texts of entire volumes of Victorian magazines from the 1880's and 1890's) at This site offers a growing archive of excerpts from Victorian periodicals (over 600 articles online to date), as well as e-books and paperback reprints of Victorian books and Victoriana collections. Find clip art, great fiction (like The Adventures of Brigadier Gerard by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), historical references and much more. Whatever you love about the Victorian period, you'll find it here!

PLEASE NOTE: When ordering e-books through PayPal, you will be routed to a page that will enable you to download all the e-books that you have ordered. If you are not able to download your books, or are not given access to all the books you have ordered, please contact Moira Allen, Editor. Please allow two business days for a response.

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