Celebrating the Power of Revision

Celebrating the Power of Revision

 Celebrating the Power of Revision

I want to celebrate Emily and her writing journey. She is one of our writers from the Writing Gym program, currently writing a novel set in ancient Egypt during the New Kingdom period. 

“I’m an elementary school teacher and I had this vision two years ago to write a novel set in ancient Egypt, because I studied and taught the theme,” Emily states. “I have a real story to tell about the artist’s life in Egypt. What it’s like working on the temples, working on tombs and more. It was a very respected lifestyle, and quite high up on the caste system in the dictatorship in Egypt.” 

Tackling middle-grade historical fiction is no small undertaking. So, kudos Emily. 

I met Emily at a local bookstore where I was running a class with some local writers.

“I was pretty much surprised, myself, that I went to your class,” Emily says in hindsight, “I really enjoyed it. It was at that point where I was trying to work up the courage to take writing more seriously. I immediately thought: ‘That’s someone who I could actually work with.’”

Emily, before we met, had already written and finished her longer story. She revised it a couple times but “it was in this sort of a standstill.” She wasn’t ready to submit and knew that she needed professional help with the submission process. 

“That’s what I thought it was kind of going for, but then when I talked with Annalisa, and being able to revise it and learn about writing has been the gift. She made that really clear when she described what the Publishing Mastermind was. That maybe the end result is getting published. But throughout it all you’re going to learn a lot. That’s what I’m celebrating.”

Once Emily and I started digging into her manuscript, her energy was so high with so much to celebrate. I asked her what that moment was like. 

“During that writing period, I used it to understand techniques and learn other techniques, experiment with other techniques, know what’s out there, know others who I might have overlooked, and read some different styles of writing within my genre.

“It made me rethink my story and how my characters needed to be doing more, speaking more, and interacting more. Sometimes, it’s those character moments where one character is thinking one thing and the other character is also thinking something, but they’re both saying something out loud. That has a whole other form of communication you can do in writing, but you can’t really do it in other forms of storytelling.” 

Emily also thinks that the inspiration that our Writing Gym community brings makes the experience so much more powerful.

“It’s really confidence-building. It makes me like writing more.” 

One takeaway that stands out to her as a bigger celebration than others is that confidence-building:

“Now I have the confidence to know that I can write a longer piece and have other projects as well.”

“Be alert and take risks. Know that there is potential out there.”

So, what is the Writing Gym? Why should you care about this? 

“Annalisa Parent is an incredibly professional who leads this inquiry-based study that is the Writing Gym. You, as the guide, ask the right questions to make you grow on your own.” 

Thank you so much, Emily. We appreciate you at the Writing Gym. 

Why does my manuscript keep getting rejected?

Why does my manuscript keep getting rejected?

Why does my manuscript keep getting rejected?


Many of you know I often spend time speaking in New York City, and while I am there I catch up with some of the industry pros.

I recently got back from one trip, and I want to share what I heard with you.

Look, guys, the outlook isn’t good.


They tell me writers are still submitting sloppy manuscripts, submitting directly to publishing houses without an agent, and breaking all the submission rules.

The people I spend time with tend to have a sense of humor, but they were not laughing about this. They were upset, not only because Sloppy Joe Submissions waste their time, but also because writers who don’t follow the rules, don’t follow the right channels, and don’t submit materials are up to Industry standards… don’t get published.

Agents and publishers are human, and they don’t like rejecting people any more than any of us do, but they’re also a little stuck.

What can you do with sloppy work that doesn’t follow the rules? They’re busy professionals. They have no choice but to reject it.

It makes me sad, too. I see so many writers who would like to be authors, but who aren’t willing to truly invest in their dream. They don’t invest in the resources to create the kind of submission that gets published.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard this story: someone who thought they could do it on their own, Googling their way to figuring it out.

This method has a 100% result rates–for failure.

When you read my book Storytelling for Pantsers, you’ll hear me use the hockey analogy a lot. Publishing a book is the NHL of the publishing world.

Do you think players end up in the NHL because they google how to play hockey? No.

Industry experts know what’s what. They can spot a fake a million miles away.

That’s one of the major frustrations editors, publishers, and agents brought up to me on my recent trip: writers not treating them like the professionals they are, respecting their expertise.


Imagine you show up for NHL practice in figure skates. Maybe you think they’re good enough, but the industry experts will not be fooled. They have no patience for it. They’re tired of it.

Why aren’t you giving yourself the very best chance for publication by showing up on time with the right materials and the right skills?

As a writing coach, I  help writers to finish manuscripts and bring them to agents and publishers everyday. I work closely with best-selling authors, publishers, editors and agents to get the most current information the writers I work with.

If you’re serious about publishing, want to get out of the slush pile, have no interest in being a sloppy joe but really want tip-top publishing for your book, let’s chat.


**This opportunity isn’t for everyone. It’s only for fiction writers who are SERIOUS about publishing a high-quality manuscript.**

Pin It on Pinterest