Second Sight

Second Sight: An Editor’s Talks on Writing, Revision & Publishing Books for Children and Young Adults

By Cheryl B. Klein                  Published by Asterick Books in 2011


second-sightI enjoy reading and studying about writing and publishing through the lens of an editor. I like getting inside their brain and understanding what they want in books, what they think is publishable and what they look for in great writing.

Second Sight: An Editor’s Talks on Writing, Revision & Publishing Books for Children and Young Adults is that kind of book. I’ll describe it using Klein’s own words in her “An Explanation of This Book.”

I am a narrative nerd. I love reading stories, taking them apart and seeing how they work, then putting them back together with each iece polished and gleaming…

This book, Second Sight, is a collection of much of my thinking on these narrative and writing topics between 2003 and 2010, as expressed in talks delivered at writers’ conferences and posts on my blog and website…

The talks themselves are arranged in the order I wrote and delivered them, culminating in four interconnected lectures on point, character, plot, and voice, and the practical “Twenty-Five Revision Techniques,” which draws from all the preceding material.

The twenty sections of Second Sight cover Klein’s detailed perspective on the following:

What Makes a Good Book?

Defining Good Writing

Finding a Publisher and Falling in Love

The Annotated Query Letter from Hell

An Annotated Query Letter That Does It Right

The Rules of Engagement

Morals, Muddles, and Making It Through; or, Plots and Popularity

Manifest: A Character Chart

Theory: A Definition of Young Adult Literature

The Art of Detection

Manifest: The Plot Checklist

Four Techniques to Get at the Emotional Heart of Your Story

Words, Wisdom, Art, and Heart: Making a Picture-Book Cookie

A Few Things Writers Can Learn from Harry Potter

Quartet:        Point


Manifest: A Character Creation Worksheet


Manifests: The Character-Based View of Plot, and Plot Types vs. Events


Revision Techniques

On the Author-Editor Relationship

Recommended Reading: Craft and Publishing

Index by Subject

Acknowledgements and Thanks

About the Author

In reading Klein’s  book I’m learning a great deal and reinforcing many things I’ve learned elsewhere. I’m afraid I had to buy a new yellow highlighter for this one!

You’ll be seeing quotes from Second Sight in my posts to FaceBook, Twitter and LinkedIn in the next few weeks. I hope they will be as helpful to you as they’ve been to me.

Please feel free to share this post AND my posts to FaceBook, Twitter and LinkedIn with any and all writerly types you know. THANKS!



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