Monday, December 6, 2010



Books make GREAT holiday gifts, and here is another opportunity for Pittsburghers to support local authors:

Saturday, December 11
11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Deja Vu Books and Antiques
222 Bridge Street
Bridgewater, PA (Beaver County)

I will be joining about a dozen other local authors at this charming indie bookstore that specializes in antique and collectible books. Stop by and do some holiday shopping!

Hosted by Beaver County Wordsmiths - visit them on Facebook!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Agent Tina Wexler on 6 1/2 Ways to Impress a Literary Agent

1. Write a really amazing query.
Which is to say: take your time, try describing your work multiple ways until you find the best approach, read successful queries online and have as many people as possible read yours so that you’re certain it makes sense and is a shiny apple.

Tina Wexler, an agent at ICM, is predominately
interested in middle grade/YA fiction and adult
nonfiction. Tina currently serves on the board of
the Rutgers University Council on Children's
Literature and is an active member of SCBWI.

2. Demonstrate knowledge of an agent's list. This doesn’t mean you have to read every book they’ve ever sold
I leave that job to my mombut by showing them you know a bit about who they represent, you’re telling agents you’ve done your research on who to query.

3. Do your research on who to query. Period.

4. Write a really amazing manuscript. Which is to say: take your time, put your work through multiple revisions, read published works in your genre, and consider joining a critique group or finding a writing partner whom you trust who can help make your manuscript a shiny apple.

5. Be nice. Agents, like most everyone, want to work with people who are personable. This does not, however, mean “Fawn over the agent” or “Send a bushel of apples to the agent.”

6. Don’t ask me, “Why all the talk about apples?” because if you’ve read my client Donna Gephart's How to Survive Middle School, you already know it’s because I'm constantly daydreaming about Bubbe’s Jewish Apple Cake. But do ask other questions you may have. Be a part of the conversation. Agents want critical thinkers who take this getting-published thing seriously.

6 ½. Take this getting-published thing seriously. There’s plenty of fun to be had, but remember, this is a business, not a hobby or a get-rich-quick scheme. Agents want hard workers, writers dedicated to their craft who view getting published as the first step of a long journey, writers whom they will want to be with on that journey.

The biggest database of agents anywhere is
the 2011 Guide to Literary Agents.
Buy it here online at a discount.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I was recently asked to take part in the 2010 Happiness Project, designed to create the “happiest year of your life.” The project coordinator, Dr. Nancy Mramor, and I have joined a dozen other authors to present articles on the top 12 things proven by researchers to cause happiness. In this series, I report on the topic of "proximity and happiness." Consider taking a moment to read it at . . . your happiness could depend on it!

Since we know that happiness is contagious, feel free forward this article after you read it to anyone who you want to be happy. And check out the other articles in the series at You can also access this article under the G-vents tab on my website

To your happiness!


Monday, October 25, 2010


Join me for this fun writer's workshop, back by popular demand :)


TONIGHT: 6:30 to 8:30 Expressions Cafe and Social Club
Harmony, PA
CALL 724.452.0869 to register

In this workshop you will learn how to:

  • View the world as the fount of glory that it is, and use this as delicious fodder for your writing or chosen art
  • Rise up from the umpteen demands on your life and stake out time for your creative self
  • Attract a conscious stream of achievement with your writing endeavors
  • Widen your “PVC pipe” to higher guidance
  • Burn through the thoughtless, negative junk that others have said about your creative dreams
  • Take small yet radical steps to change things up in your life so you can swim in a stream of inspiration

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The E-Books Have It!

Thinking of publishing your book in e-format? Publisher's Weekly reported today that while sales in the print trade segments shrank in August, e-book sales had another strong month, jumping 172.4%, to $39 million, according to the 14 publishers that report sales to the AAP’s monthly sales estimates.

For the year-to-date, e-book sales were up 192.9%, to $263 million. AAP said that of the approximately 19 publishers that report trade sales, revenue in the January to August period was $2.91 billion, making the $263 million e-book sales 9.0% of trade sales.

Compare that to the end of 2009, when e-book sales comprised 3.3% of trade sales. Wow! The face of publishing continues to morph!


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


What a summer! Glad to live it, glad to leave it behind. (Many of you have shared a similar sentiment!) Holding steadfast to the principles in my book, Everything Matters, Nothing Matters has helped in navigating the miasma. Now it's a brand new day and the future is golden. Do you feel this, too?

During retreat time in Sedona recently, 350 of us pondered big questions about how to best live a sacred, profound and creatively fertile life, and help others do so, as well. We were encouraged to "pay attention to our wake" . . . that is, the trail we leave behind (like waves left by a boat) as we walk through our days. Do you leave a trail of grievances or miracles? Judgement or love? Fear or courage?

As we lean into the autumn season, my intention is to live these answers with you. Here are a few places where I'll be during the coming weeks . . . or, as always, feel free to respond to this post or FB me!

Women Etcetera! Expo ~ Pittsburgh 2010
Author Showcase: Women Writers Discuss Their Books
October 2, 1:30 p.m. (event is all day)
The Mall at Robinson
Pittsburgh, PA
FREE admission! FREE parking!
To learn more:
Women Etcetera! has assembled professionals from a wealth of industries to create a day of rejuvenation, education and entertainment--with an emphasis on health, happiness, style and a balanced life. Fitness sessions, fashion shows, live radio broadcasts, health screenings, local women's rock bands, local authors and more.

Biz Chicks LunchMix, Lunch and Learn Program
Who Do You Think You Are?
Wednesday, October 20, 1 p.m.
Law Offices of Meyer, Unkovic & Scott LLP
535 Smithfield Street, 12th Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
$15 for members / $20 for non-members
RSVP: or 412.456.2587
If you don't know about Pittsburgh's BizChicks, you should! you need a little dose of chutzpa to awaken to your greater self? Join me as I ask the provocative question, "Who do you think you are?" and presents 7 concepts that will help you live the fullest expression of the answer.

Expressions Cafe and Social Club
The Conscious Writer: How to be Prolific in your Art, your Heart and in your Life
Monday, October 25, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Corner of Spring and Mercer Streets
Harmony, PA 16037
Fee: $40 (includes a copy of Everything Matters, Nothing Matters: How to Live with Exquisite Calm, Euphoric Creativity and Divine Clarity)
RSVP: 724.452.0869
Back by popular demand, I will be offering my creativity workshop in this charming, intimate log cabin setting. Come and discover how to view the world as the fount of glory that it is, and rise up from the umpteen demands on your life to stake out time for your creative self. Bring your writing journal or laptop. Coffee and sweet treats will be available for purchase.

Write on, Gina

Gina's public appearance/speaking gig wardrobe is provided exclusively by personal stylist Bear Brandegee. Visit

Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday the 13th . . . Good Luck for Writers!

I read this note from the editor of today and wanted to pass it along to all of you. As writers (and in life), we make our own good luck. Remember that . . . and after you're done working, play the lottery tonight!

Write on, Gina

Over the years, I've met many writers who think their struggles as a writer are merely luck—bad luck. It doesn't matter how many stories exist to the contrary, these writers are convinced that finding success is like winning the lottery. And maybe there's something to that.

I suppose if I was a writer who thought getting published was all about luck that I wouldn't invest too much energy on revision. After all, a lucky writer will find the right editor to fix up any manuscript flaws, right? I guess I wouldn't waste time building a platform or developing an audience either, because that surely comes to writers who are already lucky and/or published, which is the same as lucky.

There are examples of writers getting lucky, but let's face it: Most success stories come from writers making their own luck through working at their craft, networking (online and off), and persevering. Don't let yourself get caught in the trap of thinking you're not lucky enough to make it as a writer; you can make yourself lucky starting now.

Until next we meet, keep writing and marketing what you write.

Robert Lee Brewer
Senior Content Editor
Writer's Market

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

City of Alchemy

The amazing young sage Tone Anogianakis flew to da 'Burgh from Vancouver last week to interview me about EMNM, higher consciousness, PGH's role in the planet's spiritual evolution, conscious parenting and other topics. Filmed at the West End Overlook....

City of Alchemy

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Looking for a Book Publicist?

Hey all,

As a publishing consultant, I help match up prospective (and current) authors with whatever resources they need to get their message out into the world. If you have a writing project in the works and need an assist connecting with literary agents, small presses, larger publishing houses, POD companies, printers, typesetters, graphic design wizards and publicists, I'd be happy to work with you.

Over the years, my author clients have asked me to directly serve as their agent or publicist. While I would love to be all things to all people, I can't . . . heck, no one can. Yes, I can make valuable contacts for you and get your ball rolling in the proper direction. With that in mind, here is a link to a pretty good list of reputable book publicists. Check it out!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Need a Shot of Creative Juice?

I will be a guest on the Living at Yes radio show tonight @ 6. See Twitter banner on the right-hand column of this blog to connect!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Considering Publishing on Amazon Kindle?

Kindle Bestsellers Top Movers & Shakers
  1. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson(Knopf)
  2. The Last Song - Nicholas Sparks (Grand Central)
  3. The Help - Kathryn Stockett (Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam)
  4. Shutter Island - Dennis Lehane (HarperTorch)
  5. Split Image - Robert B. Parker (Putnam)
  1. The Girl Who Played with Fire - Stieg Larsson(Knopf)
  2. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks - Rebecca Skloot (Crown)
  3. The Last Surgeon - Michael Palmer (St. Martin's Press)
  4. Fantasy in Death - J.D. Robb (Putnam)
  5. The Silent Sea - Clive Cussler (Putnam)
  1. Vows of Silence: The Abuse of Power in the Papacy of John Paul II -Jason Berry (Free Press) +8400%
  2. The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Vietnam War - Phillip Jennings(Regnery Press) +3800%
  3. Arthur and George - Julian Barnes (Knopf) +2400%
  4. Marshall's Law - Denise A. Agnew (Samhain) +1900%
  5. True Story: Murder, Memoir, Mea Culpa - Michael Finkel (Harper Perennial) +1900%
For more information on how to publish your titles on the Amazon Kindle, please click here.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Are you ON THE VERGE of a creative breakthrough?

Don't miss this evening program on March 2 in Pittsburgh.
Created and produced by yours truly.


Check it out:

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Creating a Virtual Book Tour

My friend and colleague, Linda Handley, recently published an endearing children’s book, Squeeky and Louie, in honor of her father, F. R. Handley. (All proceeds from its sale benefit the American Cancer Society.) Linda had the brilliant idea to take Squeeky and Louie on a virtual book tour and was kind enough to share her process for doing so with all of you.

What is a Virtual Book Tour?

A virtual book tour is when an author visits websites, blogs and forums instead of bookstores, cafes and universities that a brick-and-mortar book tour would include. During each stop of the virtual book tour, an author "visits" a different website, blog or forum and may: be interviewed, post an original article or essay (guest post), have their book reviewed, answer questions from the blog's readers or any combination of the above.

Creating a Virtual Book Tour

When creating a virtual book tour it is important to have a well thought out and organized tour. Here are five steps to get you started.

1. Review your current contact and inform them that you are doing a tour; invite them to join you by 1) posting content to their own blog, 2) getting the word out to their social networks or 3) giving you general support.

2. Search other blogs, forums and networks for additional sites that may be interested in hosting you. Keep in mind that you want to stay in your target area and not just invite everyone.

3. Keep a schedule of your dates, keeping in mind that you will need to monitor and respond to comments.

4. Promote your tour on your web site, social networks, blog and press releases.

5. Thank the tour host and do any necessary follow-up.

6. Have an electronic copy of your media kit accessible on your web site or blog. This allows for easy sharing of your book information and you as an author.

Tips provided by Lee Drozak of My Office Assistant:

Read more about Squeeky and Louie:

Squeeky and Louie is a children's tale about two gray mice and their adventures with Gus the Cat. "What are little, loving mice going to do when they want to come out and play? This turns out to be an easy problem to solve. Well, with a little clever help the two mice lead the reader on a tale of adventure." The simple text is joyous and engaging, but this is really a story told through the marvelous illustrations. Youngsters will love all the captivating facial expressions and wonderful humorous detail on each page. Squeeky and Louie is a timeless classic to share with friends, family, and future generations. Visit

Monday, February 1, 2010

Ten Changes in Publishing Since 2000

A lot has changed in the writing industry since started in 2000 (the same year that my first book, The Highest and The Best, was released). Most of us used dial-up to search the Internet for publishers and agent. Social network wasn't in the English vernacular yet (Facebook didn't even start until 2003)

Here are a few other things that have changed in the past 10 years, according to
  1. Many publications and publishers accept electronic submissions, whether via e-mail or online submission forms.
  2. More than ever, writers have to brand themselves.
  3. Writers must do the work of marketing and promoting themselves to agents, editors, publishers, and--ultimately--readers. (Wondering how? We recommend Get Known Before the Book Deal.)
  4. Personal sites and blogs have made it easier than ever for writers to develop an audience.
  5. Ad-based print resources (i.e., Magazines and Newspapers) have struggled to adjust to the Internet with new content strategies and pricing models. (Market Watch, exclusively subscribers gives you insight on the latest changes.)
  6. Due to the tough economic times, publications are relying more and more on freelancers. (With over 8000 listings, can help you find these opportunities.)
  7. The proliferation of online content has opened up more opportunities than ever for writers from all backgrounds.
  8. There are more online tools than ever to help writers research and write more efficiently and knowledgeably.
  9. Social media offers easy and ground-breaking ways to network with publishing professionals, other writers, and potential interviewees. (If you're not already a member, join the Writer's Digest Community. You'll become a part of a supportive and creative community dedicated to the art and craft of writing.)
  10. Businesses and organizations now rely on great content to attract new customers, sell products, and spread important messages--the trend of content marketing. (Wonder how much you should charge for this content? The "How Much Should I Charge? Rate Card" gives you answers!)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Words of Writing Wisdom for Twenty Ten

As we begin this new decade, we're reminded of how fast time flies. Have you set fresh writing goals for 2010? Don't break that resolution before even the first of the year's 12 months is over. Take courage from these words by one of my favorite writing teachers, Natalie Goldberg:

"As writers we live life twice, like a cow that eats its food once and then regurgitates it to chew and digest it again. We have a second chance at biting into our experience and examining it . . . This is our life and it's not going to last forever. There isn't time to talk about someday writing that short story or poem or novel. Slow down now, touch what is around you, and out of care and compassion for each moment and detail, put pen to paper and begin to write."

Onward and upward!
Best, Gina