Five Publishing Tips from the Writers Coffeehouse

Jonathan Maberry and Don Lafferty at the Writers Coffeehouse

Now more than ever it’s important for writers to know what’s happening in the publishing industry — the latest trends, the markets, how to pitch and sell, social media, connecting with readers, marketing, trends, etc. — and how to use that knowledge to sell books and articles. The days when all a writer needed to do was write are long gone.

That’s where the Writers Coffeehouse comes in. Moderated by New York Times best-selling author Jonathan Maberry and The Philly Liars Club, this group of published and non-published writers (often as many as fifty) meets the last Sunday of every month to network and discuss writing and the publishing industry. This isn’t a critique group, but a discussion about the business of publishing.

This month Jonathan Maberry (author of DRAGON FACTORY and ROT AND RUIN), Dennis Tafoya (author of DOPE THIEF and WOLVES OF FAIRMOUNT PARK), Don Lafferty (Social Media Strategist), Tammy Burke (2011 The Write Stuff conference Chair), Rob Kall (Executive Editor and Publisher of, Gerri George, and others left their keyboards at home and chatted about the biz.

Writers Coffeehouse

Following the coffeehouse each month, I’ll share five useful tidbits that we discussed about the business or craft of writing. So, grab a cup of Joe and join us.

1. The great test screening of the new Stephenie Meyer’s movie (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) has increased the sales of her books significantly. As a result, sales of vampire books and the advances paid for them have also increased.

2. The fastest growth in the male book reading market is the middle grade (12 to 15 year old) market. Editors are gobbling up books. And, the books are selling to foreign markets and are being optioned for film.

Gerri George, Rob Kall, Writers Coffeehouse

3. When revising a novel with multiple points of view, consider editing each point of view separately from the rest of the book, from beginning to end. This will help in creating a consistent and engaging voice for each point of view.

4. Some of the nonfiction books that are grabbing the biggest advances right now are those that deal with how to survive in these challenging economic times. Diet, fitness, home buying on a budget, and do-it-yourself home repair books are on the rise. With any non-fiction book, platform is essential.

5. When the publishing industry finally makes downloads affordable, it won’t be worth the risk to pirate books anymore.

To join the conversation live, meet us at the Barnes and Noble, 102 Park Avenue, Willow Grove, PA the last Sunday of every month at 12:00. No experience necessary. Join the conversation online here:

I’d love to hear about your local writers group and the things you guys talk about.


  1. Good summary of the coffeehouse news, Janice. This is a great idea. Now when I have to miss a coffeehouse, I can check out the latest news here. Thanks!

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  3. Lorie Greenspan

    Nice web site Janice!

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