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The Shit No One Tells You About Writing

English, Arts, 20 seasons, 246 episodes, 3 days, 19 hours, 35 minutes
This is a podcast for emerging writers, who are looking to improve their work with an aim to having it published, or anyone who would like a behind-the-scenes look at the publishing industry. Your host, Bianca Marais (the author of 'Hum If You Don't Know the Words' and 'If You Want to Make God Laugh') will be interviewing authors, agents, editors, publicists, copy editors, creative writing instructors, writing groups, book sellers, jacket designers, audio book narrators, and just about anyone and everyone who's involved in bringing a book to market. Expect good advice, honest insights and a few laughs along the way.
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How POV Choice Lends Itself to Emotionality

In today's episode, Carly and CeCe are joined by Kelly S. Thompson, author of the memoir Still, I Cannot Save You. The three discuss: POV lending itself to emotionality in pages and the importance of choosing the right POV to fully exemplify that emotionality; the two required elements of a memoir and the importance of a thematic singular thread through it; remembering what your reader knows vs what you know; Kelly’s journey to publication; mapping out the memories and moments in memoirs; and Kelly’s advice for fellow memoirists.Find us on our socials:Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyraInstagram:,, and affiliate page: information about Kelly can be found at:'s on Instagram at Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
8/31/202356 minutes, 25 seconds
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June Bonus Episode with Julie Carrick Dalton and Kerryn Mayne

In today's Bonus Episode, we have two amazing author interviews!Bianca chats with returning guest Julie Carrick Dalton, author of The Last Beekeeper, about dual timelines vs flashbacks; POV strategy; writing from a place of rage vs a place of fear; including hope in your story while confronting fears; having readers absorb important information while you’re still entertaining them with your story; and balancing what you believe in vs preaching to your readers.After which, Bianca and Kerryn Mayne, author of Lenny Marks Gets Away with Murder (which has since sold in the US market to St. Martin’s Press) chat about Kerryn's experience querying; publishing in markets outside the US; writing in a genre that relates to her career; and Kerryn's take on writing groups.Find us on our socials:Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyraInstagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsites:,, and www.cecilialyra.comKerryn can be found at She’s on Instagram at @kcmwritesJulie can be found at She's on Twitter @juliecardalt and Instagram @juliecdalton.Advertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
6/26/202351 minutes, 45 seconds
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May Bonus Episode: All the Romance & We Answer Your Questions & Give You Comps

Today's episode is sponsored by HelloFresh. Go to HelloFresh dot com slash tsnotyaw16 and use code tsnotyaw16 for 16 free meals plus free shipping!In today's bumper Bonus Episode, we chat with two internationally bestselling authors in the romance genre before taking your questions and giving you comp titles.CeCe kicks us off by interviewing Carley Fortune, author of Meet Me at the Lake, about planting curiosity seeds; the editing process; the struggle with negative self-talk when writing; the development of Carley's characters; and creating chemistry amongst characters.After which, Carly chats with Emily Henry, author of Happy Place about dialogue; facets of success; masculinity in literature; healthy conflict with characters; her book covers; and her potential involvement in the film adaptations of her books.Carly and CeCe then take all your questions!Finally, Bianca chats with Emilie Sommer from East City Book Shop and RJ Witherow of Parnassus Books as they give comps recommendations.Find us on our socials:Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyraInstagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsites:,, and www.cecilialyra.comMore information about Carley can be found at She’s on Instagram @carleyfortuneMore information about Emily can be found at She's on Instagram @emilyhenrywrites.Parnassus Books can be found at and on Instagram at @parnassusbooksEmilie can be found at @emiliegsommer on Instagram and East City Book Shop can be found at Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
5/29/20232 hours, 17 minutes, 51 seconds
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Jam-packed February Bonus Episode

In today's jam-packed Bonus Episode, Bianca, Carly, and CeCe answer questions about whether dark novels and WWII novels have a place in the current market; when it's okay to pitch an unfinished book; how to evaluate comps through number of reviews; about liking your own comps; submitting through query tracker; writing outside of genre conventions; following up with agents; and how to distinguish omniscient POV from third person POV.After which, Carly chats with Lindsay Wong, author of Tell Me Pleasant Things About Immortality, about her inspiration for her short story collection; the themes explored in her body of work; why she likes being a creative writing instructor; the challenges of pitching as a BIPOC author and filling a gap in the market; her experiences as a woman of color at conferences; and some pros and cons of working with a big publishing house vs a smaller one. We also play an excerpt from Lindsay’s audiobook.Then, Bianca chats with Jennifer Wilson, author of Grant Us Tomorrow, about what caused Jennifer to finally get writing; the act of beginning; forming a team to help you stay on track; protecting your voice when working with a team; trusting the reader; and Jennifer's path to publication.Finally, Bianca chats with Emilie Sommer from East City Book Shop as Emilie gives comps recommendations.Find us on our socials:Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyraInstagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsites:,, and www.cecilialyra.comLindsay can be found at @lindsaymwong on Twitter and at @lindsaywong.m on Instagram and at www.lindsaywongwriter.comJennifer can be found at and at @grantustomorrow on InstagramEmilie can be found at @emiliegsommer on Instagram and East City Book Shop can be found at www.eastcitybookshop.comAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
2/27/20231 hour, 53 minutes, 28 seconds
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BONUS EPISODE: Jesse Thistle's Advice to Memoirists & Our First Q&A Session

In today's Bonus Episode, Bianca chats with Jesse Thistle, author of the bestselling and award-winning memoir, From the Ashes, about the difference between memoir and biography; thinking about what you want the ‘message’ of your memoir to be; speaking to universal elements of your memoir; the emotional/psychological effects of writing memoir about traumatic events; and Jesse's advice to memoirists. After which, Carly, CeCe and Bianca take your questions! If you'd like to ask a question, head over to: us on our socials: Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyra Instagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsite: www.biancamarais.comJesse Thistle can be found at www. and on Instagram at: @czechmet and on Facebook at @thistlejesseAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
3/7/202244 minutes, 25 seconds
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Writing Romance Masterclass

In today's BONUS EPISODE, we do a deep dive into the romance genre. Bianca first chats with Farah Heron, author of Accidentally Engaged and Tahira in Bloom, about the sub-genres of romance; how romance is defined; the difference between romance and women’s fiction; The Bridgerton Effect; structure and plotting for romance; and tropes in the romance genre.After which, Bianca chats with publishing phenomenon, Elena Armas, author of The Spanish Love Deception, about her journey from bookstagrammer to bestselling author; the power of Tik Tok; indie-publishing editing vs. traditionally published editing; how to make your own book covers; and how to write steamy sex scenes. Find us on our socials: Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyra Instagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsite: www.biancamarais.comFarah Heron can be found at and on Twitter at @FarahHeron and on Instagram at @FarahHeronAuthor Elena Armas can be found at and on Instagram at @thebibliotheque and on Twitter at @elenaarmasbooksAdvertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
2/28/202246 minutes, 8 seconds
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BONUS Episode: Discussing Action and Humor with Mark Greaney and Josie Silver

In today's BONUS EPISODE Bianca first chats with Mark Greaney, author of Sierra Six, about writing espionage mysteries, putting your manuscript aside to work on something different so you can come back to it with fresh eyes; using every project as a learning experience;  immersing yourself in your research; writing a series; listing your characters if you have a lot of them; and how to manage the scene arc in shorter chapters.After which, Bianca chats with Josie Silver, author of One Night on the Island, about writing rom-coms; publishing without an agent; infusing humor into your writing; writing in first person; giving characters a lot of emotional baggage, and using a plot mechanism to create humor; having internal and external conflict in the first few pages; and assigning each POV character to someone from your life or an actor to keep them separate and differentiated on the page.Find us on our socials: Twitter: @TSNOTYAW @BiancaM_author @carlywatters @ceciliaclyra Instagram: @biancamarais_author @carlywatters @cece_lyra_agent @ the_shit_about_writingFacebook: @tsnotyawWebsite: www.biancamarais.comMark Greaney can be found at and on Instagram at @Mark GreaneyBooks and Twitter at @MarkGreaneyBookJosie Silver can be found at and on Instagram at @josiesilverauthor and on Twitter at @JosieSilver_Advertising Inquiries: & Opt-Out:
2/7/202246 minutes, 18 seconds