Posted by: Alice Fitzpatrick | June 1, 2013

Top Ten Things Not to Say to an Unpublished Author

Fellow Canadian mystery writer Elizabeth Duncan recently posted Ten Things Not to Say to an Author (  As an unpublished (I prefer the term “prepublished”) writer and inspired by Elizabeth, I have assembled my own list.

10.      Where can I buy your book?

9.         How’s the book going?

8.         Do you have an agent yet?

7.         You seem to have been working on that book for an awfully long time.

6.         Have you thought about making it into a movie instead?

5.         Will you be able to retire when it’s published?

4.         My best friend’s cousin’s eighteen-year-old daughter just got published.

3.         How hard can it be to get published?

2.         It might be time to self-publish.

1.         Isn’t your book published yet?

Whoops, ran out of numbers, but one of my all-time favourites is  “I read lots of badly written books.  How come you can’t get published?”



  1. How about “maybe you should do something else”

    • It’s only people who don’t understand why we have to write who tell us to give up writing. When people ask me are you will working on that book, my answer is it will take as long as it takes. I recently learnt that it took Jane Austen 14 years to publish Sense and Sensibility. I am comforted by that.

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