Based on years of teaching about how to plan, plot, write and market commercial women’s fiction, romance and Chick Lit novels, this non-fiction book is designed to help you get that novel started, keep it going, and sell it once it’s finished. It also includes a list of agents and publishers who publish Chick Lit, as well as online resources.
Instead of posting the traditional excerpt, I’m sharing my Table of Contents with you. Enjoy!
“Will Write for Shoes is an accessible, fun, and detailed guide for anyone wanting to write a chick-lit book.”
– Caren Lissner, author of Starting from Square Two and Carrie Pilby
“Cathy Yardley has taken an in-depth look at the phenomenon of chick lit and condensed it into an easy-to understand guide for the writer longing to sell in the marketplace. By exploring some of chick lit’s trends and characters, and giving a humorous but honest look at the do’s and don’ts of the biz, she’s arming writers with a valuable tool in their arsenal on the way to publication.”
– Erica Orloff, author of Spanish Disco, Do They Wear High Heels in Heaven, and Mafia Chic
“I laughed, I cried, I finished my chick lit novel! Thank you, Cathy Yardley, for putting everything I ever wanted to know about chick lit all in one place. The appendices alone are worth their weight in chocolate.”
– Deanna Carlyle, author of “Dead Men Don’t Eat Quiche” in This is Chick Lit
“A clear, concise, easy to read (and reread) guide to writing contemporary women’s fiction, from initial idea to handling rejection. Far from handing down a list of iron-clad chick-lit rules, Yardley offers helpful tips on how to avoid tapping into the cliches of the genre. Like a pair of heels you can actually dance in, this book is a keeper.”
– Alisa Kwitney, author of Sex as a Second Language
Part I: Overview – It’s a Chick’s World
Chapter 1: Introduction – What is Chick Lit?
Chapter 2: A Brief History of Chick Lit
Chapter 3: Chick Lit 101 – the Basics of “Traditional” Chick Lit
Chapter 4: Brave New Chicks – New Sub-genres, Cross-genres, and Experiments
Part II: Where Do I Sign Up? – How to Write a Chick Lit Novel
Chapter 5: What’s it All About? – Premise
Chapter 6: From Ducklings to Divas – Characters
Chapter 7: There’s a Story in Here Somewhere – Story
Chapter 8: Driving With a Map – Outlining
Chapter 9: Joyriding – Free-form Writing
Chapter 10: Underwire for Your Novel – Story Structure
Chapter 11: Whose Story Is This, Anyway? – Point of View
Chapter 12: Being You and Loving It – Voice
Chapter 13: Warning: Period of Time When Your Life Will Necessarily Suck – Revisions
“Cele-break!” – Congratulations! You’ve finished your first Chick Lit novel!
Ideas to celebrate the accomplishment
Part III: Baby Needs A New Pair of Shoes – the Crapshoot That Is Selling Your Novel
Chapter 14: Query Letters, the Chick Lit Way
Chapter 15: Synopsis – You’ve got a Voice, Use It!
Chapter 16: The Great Agent Safari
Chapter 17: It’s A Wild World – Approaching Publishers
Chapter 18: Welcome to the Matrix – Online Networking
Chapter 19: Girl’s Night In – How To Form a Crit Group
“Cele-break!” – Congratulations! You’ve sold your first Chick Lit novel!
Ideas to celebrate the accomplishment
Part IV: FAQ’s for CHQ’s (or, “Questions I’m Asked All The Time”)
“I’m not cool/young/hip/funny enough to write Chick Lit, am I?”
“Do I have to write in the first person? Most of the books I’ve read are in the first POV.”
“What are the rules for Chick Lit?”
“Can my characters swear? Do they have to swear?”
“I’m writing a book about (whatever.) Is this still Chick Lit? How can I tell?”
“I read that the Chick Lit trend is over. Should I even bother writing one?”
“Everybody calls Chick Lit dumb, anti-feminist, and a bunch of other bad things. What do you think?”
Parting Shot: Release Your Inner Chick
Back Matter: (Mostly) Useful Info
Sample Query Letter
Chicks to Check Out: A bibliography
Cyberific: Sites to See