Andrew Lownie uses his expert knowledge in the publishing field to maximise the potential of his clients and build up their careers. Here Andrew Lownie, and some of his clients and guest columnists, share advice on a variety of topics to writers. Elsewhere on the site you can find a Frequently Asked Questions list on literary agents, as well as advice for submitting work to agents.

  • UFOS are back

    20 Apr 2006

    Nick Pope, former UFO desk officer at the MOD and author of several UFO books argues that interest in UFOs is returning. After a period when interest in the subject had waned, the topic is suddenly generating a vast amount of media coverage. So what's going on and what are the implications for publishers and authors? First of all, I should declare an interest. I used to run the British Government's UFO Project at the Ministry of Defence. I've written four books on the subject, all of which were agented (can I use a noun as a verb if my editor isn't looking?) by Andrew Lownie. Interest in...Read more

  • A Literary Editor's View of Publicity and Review Copies

    11 Apr 2006

    James Munson, literary editor of Contemporary Review and author of a forthcoming social history of nineteenth century European travel, rates publicity departments and their sending out of review copies. As someone who is a literary editor as well as a writer, I have an unusual perspective on book publicity. First, some details. The journal for whose book reviews I am responsible, Contemporary Review, is venerable, having been established in 1866. It is a learned, but not academic journal devoted to international affairs, politics, the environment and current literary issues. It has 136 pa...Read more

  • Writing Children's History

    03 Apr 2006

    Patrick Dillon, who is writing a children's history of Britain, belives history is best told through stories. I first fell in love with history through stories. Alfred burning the cakes, the Six Wives of Henry VIII – I wasn’t sure how they differed from Greek myths or bible stories, but they stuck in my mind then, and they’re still there now. At school we were given a blue pamphlet by HW Hartley MA (Oxon) entitled ‘Notes of British History’. It began with Julius Caesar and ended with Queen Victoria’s funeral, and we made that journey every academic year...Read more

  • Creating a List

    02 Apr 2006

    Trevor Dolby joined HarperCollins as the Publisher for HarperEntertainment in the latter half of 2004. He began his career creating and writing highly illustrated books for Michael Joseph and Mitchel Beazley, later moving on to be Science Editor at the venerable publisher John Murray. In the mid 1980s he joined Paul Hamlyn’s eponymous company, eventually running the illustrated publishing division. From the large to the small, he then became Publishing Director of Pavilion, and then back to the large by joining Orion to create the one of the most successful non-fiction lists of the ...Read more

  • Microsoft Word? No Thanks, BILL, I'm a Writer...

    02 Apr 2006

    A lean, power-packed Russian word processor beats Microsoft Word hands-down and should be every writer's No.1 text tool, writes Jimmy Lee Shreeve. You can't get away from Microsoft Word. It's seemingly on everyone's desktop computer - well, apart from those running Linux or Apple Macintosh systems (saying that there's even a version of Word for Mac). But it's not on my PC. Why? Because I don't consider MS Word to be writer or journalist friendly. Don't get me wrong, MS Word is a very powerful documentation tool - great for writing complex technical manuals (for airliners and cars, for exa...Read more

  • What Life as an Editor Entails, Series Three

    01 Apr 2006

    Continuing the series on life as an editor, Helen Coyle outlines the sort of books which interest her.Helen read English Literature at the University of Leeds and has worked as a bookseller and in the publicity and editorial departments at Virago and Little Brown. She lived in Paris for a year, studying French literature and working for a literary agent, before returning to London to be a non-fiction editor at Hodder & Stoughton. Being an editor always struck me as just about the most romantic thing one could be, short of being a lion tamer or a spy. The thrills of reading and spec...Read more