Mini blog: What Kiersten said

Very frequently I get asked about writing.  No.  Scratch that.

Very frequently I get asked about publishing.

Because, let’s face it, most people don’t want to just write a book.  They want to PUBLISH a book.  And more often than not people skip right over the pesky “writing” part because…well…it’s not nearly as much fun.

I used to post a lot here about my thoughts on writing and publishing and just general advice for writers (see the FOR WRITERS section of this website for proof.)  But I haven’t done that in a long time because, well, I guess I feel like I’ve already said everything worth saying on the subject.

So today I’m not going to say anything.

I’m just going to say ditto to everything Kiersten White said in this absolutely brilliant post on the subject.

Seriously.  If you want to be a writer today or tomorrow or five years from now, go read Kiersten’s post right now.

I will only add one thing.

Kiersten is absolutely right about everything she says, but I was especially glad to see her talk about her friends.  This is something my friend, Jennifer Lynn Barnes, and I talk about all the time.

Jen is a lot younger than I am (age-wise) but we’re almost exactly the same age in publishing years.  We both had our first books come out roughly six years ago.  In fact, most of my friends have been doing this about that long.  Why?  Because publishing is like high school (in a lot of ways).

Freshmen are friends with freshmen.  Seniors mostly hang out with seniors.  Now, are there exceptions?  Do some people cross grades and make great friends with people who are either older or younger?  Absolutely!  But for the most part, you become closest to the people you have the most things in common with.

And freshmen are going through different things than seniors are dealing with.

An author who is querying agents has a different set of daily challenges than an author who is struggling to finish the sequel of doom while dealing with a ten city tour.

Those are different challenges that come with the “publishing age” you are.  And that’s why I think it’s always best to look for friends among people who are in the same phase of career that you are currently in.

And that’s all I’ve got to say.

I’m going to go work on my book now.





  1. Thx ally this helped a lot!

  2. Kelli (Ally Carter reader forever) says:

    Ever since I read Cross my Heart and Hope to Spy, I loved your work and all the books you have written. YOU ARE THE BEST AUTHOR IN THE WORLD!! Keep writing Ally.


    An Ally Carter Reader Forever

  3. Hey Ally!!

    I’m not a want-a-be novel writer, but I am a want-a-be song writer! And even though It’s different, I still think this is really good advice. So THANKS!!!!!! You’re so AWESOME!! And I love your books!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Hey I just wanted to say I love your books and cannot wait for the next GG book to come out you’re amazing, and just thought id mention how ironic this is because my name is Kirsten White and in this post The lady’s name is Kiersten White!! crazy stuff!

  5. I want to write a book. Books should be considered scenarios such as writing a letter. At least one year of preparation required.

  6. Haha thats neat! Love the analogy! Cant wait for gg5 and hs3

  7. Thanks, Ally!

  8. umm you really had me scared about writing (like alot( like i don t want to finish any of my books scared) at the writing is like high school but i guess it is really true!!!

  9. Ally, I have admired you sience 3rd grade now it’s been two years and I’ve read all of your books and I love you, your my role model.keep up the good work. : )

    Your #1 fan

  10. Lol! love the comparison! Ally {as previously mentioned} you rock!!!

  11. Thx Ally!

  12. Ally!!!
    Love the way you compared the two, it makes, a ton of sense. Ally, you are an amazing author, thanks. That’s all I have to say, right now.
    -Alexis :)

  13. Thank you ally. I need this words

  14. People shouldn’t make such a big deal out of getting published. If you are truly a writer, don’t you enjoy writing and creating something out of your own imagination. It doesn’t matter what happens, it is always worth it.
    That’s how I feel when I write anyways.
    Publishing is a plus, I suppose. I reward for your hard work, but if you don’t finish your book and make it better in the edits and try your absolute best, how are you supposed to get the reward? You won’t. Thanks for the advice, Ally and Kiersten.

  15. <3 writting says:

    I agree wth you a hundred percent^^^ . I mean I love writting alot and yea I’m only 12 and well when I tell people I write stories (not many books only 1 but its 230 pages! that was my goal for the year anyway). Well anyways ppl always ask “You getting it published? ex) the one with 230 pages.( plus what 12 year old gets a published book? just being realistic.Anyways well in my opion the fact that you write is big but i guess to some ppl you have to be a published to actully call yourself a ‘writer’. well i disagree theres a lot of writers on this website and I bet one day there all going to get published but todays there glory days, the days when your not stressing about tours and having friends full support Thanks for everything!

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