The Writing Prof
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The Writing Prof

This is an email from A Word, Please, a newsletter by The Writing Prof.

A Word Please #5 — Monthly Newsletter of The Writing Prof

In which the newsletter prepares for a busy summer

Photo by wes lewis on Unsplash

The Writing Prof is alive and well.

If you are a writer, please submit content as usual. If you want to be a writer, please look at our contribute link and sign up to be a writer. It’s easy!

Atlanta Writers Conference

I spent the past 6 weeks finishing the edits on my memoir to participate in query letter reviews, pitch sessions, and manuscript reviews for the Atlanta Writers Conference on May 6–7.

I also started a free substack newsletter to discuss my memoir, the making of my memoir, and to document my journey to traditional publication. It’s called My Own Private Waste Land: T. S. Eliot, Mental Illness, and the Making of a Memoir. If you can, please follow. Building a platform will help me get accepted by an agent or publisher.

I got valuable advice from a meeting with two agents about my query letter. I had three manuscript reviews (a pre-conference edit + two reviews). One agent liked my writing but didn’t like my query or synopsis. He said it was a “horrible litany of drama and pain” that wouldn’t hold a reader’s interest. I had to laugh at that. In telling one of the conference participants, he said, “oh, that’s not a bad comment — he had a visceral reaction. That’s actually good.” Ironically, the same reviewer LIKED my manuscript despite the query letter, but he still took a pass on it.

The other agent LOVED my idea in building my memoir with The Waste Land. She asked me to make a few changes to clarify and then wait a month and send her my manuscript again with the additional of a few more chapters.

For my pitch, the agent asked me to send 50 pages of my manuscript. She also said the query needed to be different but she was open to the project and to a future project. So these are all promising developments for my memoir.

Here Comes Summer

Now that the conference is over, my attention returns to Medium and The Writing Prof, developmental editing classes, new writing projects, and job search in anticipation of my move from Atlanta to Seattle at the end of the summer.

I Can Help You With Your Writing Process

If you need help with your writing process or getting started on Medium, or for manuscript review or ghostwriting services, please contact me at

(NOTE WELL: I will never sell you an online course, never tell you that blogging will make you a great writer, never give you an income reveal and say “you, too, can be me!” — but I CAN and WILL help you become a better writer. Just ask me how. Hint: It’s all about your writing process.)

Now back to our regularly scheduled program — The Writing Prof!

Just keep writing!

Lee G. Hornbrook taught college English for 25 years and is an expert in the writing process. He is the editor of The Writing Prof.

Follow my progress in getting my memoir published at my FREE substack newsletter “My Own Private Waste Land: T. S. Eliot, Mental Illness, and The Making of a Memoir.

If you like my stories and wish to support me as a writer, consider signing up to become a Medium member. Just $5 a month will give you unlimited access to stories on Medium. If you sign up using my link, I’ll earn a small commission.




The Writing Prof is a collection of ideas about the art and craft of writing from a college professor and other writing professionals. You’ll find writing tips and posts about grammar and punctuation, language and literature, book reviews, personal essays, and all things writing.

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Lee G. Hornbrook

Lee G. Hornbrook

Writer and Writing Coach. Memoirist. Editor of The Writing Prof. Experienced writer — I can help you tell your story. Connect at LinkedIn, Twitter @leehornbrook

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