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#AcWriMo is coming
Hello Manuscript Workers!
Today’s newsletter is a quick one to let you know about a project that my colleagues Margy Thomas and Helen Sword are initiating for academic writers. It’s called #AcWriMoments, which they’ve conceived as a “gentle take on #AcWriMo (Academic Writing Month).”
If you don’t know what Academic Writing Month is, it’s a variation on National Novel Writing Month, which traditionally takes place online in November. The idea is to set a big writing goal (like finish a 50,000-word novel draft in 30 days) and see how far you can get by working alongside thousands of others doing the same thing. Everyone uses the hashtag to post about their progress on social media, in hopes of cultivating a sense of online community and mutual support. There’s more about the history of #AcWriMo here, if you’re interested.
Margy and Helen’s “gentle take” is less about setting overly ambitious word-count goals and more about reflecting on your writing and writing projects in an expansive way. Here’s how they explain it in their introductory Substack post:
In days of yore, #AcWriMo (Academic Writing Month) was all about word counts, timers, and quantitative assessment of your writing progress.
We’ve created #AcWriMoments as an alternative to that kind of productivity-pushing writing challenge. Each day throughout the month of November 2023, you’ll receive a fresh writing prompt ushering you into a sacred moment of communion with yourself and your scholarly work.
These 30 beautiful prompts have been created by writing coaches, editors, consultants, and scholars whose approaches honor the connection between your intellect and the whole human being that you are. In just a few minutes of reflection each day, you can discover new energy, insights, and encouragement for your scholarly work.
We look forward to sharing this experience with you and to reading your reflections in the Comments each day. Please share this email with your friends and encourage them to sign up too!
Margy and Helen have graciously invited me to contribute one of the 30 writing prompts. If you’d like to receive it next month, along with prompts from all the other contributors every day in November, you can sign up for Margy and Helen’s #AcWriMoments newsletter for free.
If your specific writing goal for next month is to finish your scholarly book proposal, I have another tool that can help.
My Book Proposal Shortcut for Busy Scholars is a self-guided online course that walks you through crafting an outstanding book proposal and preparing to pitch it to scholarly publishers. A series of brief recordings explains how to tackle each element of your proposal in a way that will connect effectively with your dream publishers. Worksheets and a library of successful sample proposals from past participants will guide and inspire you as you map out your own book project.
I will be available to answer your questions directly, including any questions about connecting with acquiring editors and interpreting their responses (which can feel a bit mysterious and overwhelming if you’ve never published a book before).
I’m planning some back-end maintenance on the Shortcut, which means enrollment will be temporarily closing on November 1. If you sign up before then, you’ll have continuous access to the course throughout November (and beyond). You’ll keep access to the course forever, so you can also use it for any future books you might have in the back of your mind.
I am extending my offer from last week to donate $50 from each sale of the Shortcut through November 1 to UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees). You can also donate directly if you’re moved to do so.
If you have any questions about the Shortcut, please feel free to ask any time!
Last call for next month’s new book announcements!
Do you have a scholarly book coming out in November or December? Would you like to share it with the 10,000+ scholarly writers and publishing folks who’ll receive this newsletter on November 1st?
Send me an email with your cover jpg, link to the publisher’s webpage, and any discount codes you’d like to include. You can reply directly to any of my newsletters in your inbox, or if you’d like to make extra-sure I flag your message as a new book to share, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org using the subject line “NEW BOOK.”
I will be sharing a year-end round-up of all 2023 books in December, so if your book came out earlier this year and you’d like it to be included, go ahead and email me as well. If your forthcoming-in-2024 book already has a cover and webpage, you can email me about that too so I can file it away for a newsletter next year.
See you next week!