The Dead Robots' Society

Writers on Writing


Hey, everyone, Justin here. Tonight I bring you three panels that I recorded at this year’s Dragon*Con. I hope you enjoy them, and that you get something from them.

Panel #1 – Turning Rejections Into Acceptances

Hosted by Lee Martindale, panel included Peter David, Anne Sowards (Penguin Editor), Lynn Abbey, Christopher Golden, and Jean Marie Ward.

Panel #2 – What Editors Want

Hosted by Bill Fawcett, panel included Stacy Hague-Hill (Tor), Claire Eddy (Tor), Betsy Mitchell (Del-Ray), Anne Sowards (Ace), Katja Jensen (Peachtree Publishers), Jim Minz (Baen), Kerrie Lynn Hughes, Unknown (Loose Id), Lou Anders (Pyr)

Panel #3 – Things I Wish A Pro Had Told Me When I Started Out

Hosted by Kevin J Anderson and Rebecca Moesta. This is based on their Superstars Writing Seminars.



  1. Thank you so much. Looking forward to listening to them!

    Great job on the DRS panel too. Was awesome!

  2. Aw, thanks, Rob. I hope you enjoy all of it. I tried to get more, but it is hard making it to everything *I* want to see and do, and also getting in stuff I know the podcast needs. It’s a balancing act, and hopefully I didn’t disappoint.

  3. Just finished listening to the “What Editors Look For” podcast…
    I am so depressed now. I knew about most of the stories, advice and anecdotes…witnessed it at times…

    But it is just a reminder of how difficult it is to get to that promise land.

    I have to go back and listen to show #57 again…”Dark Times in a Writers Soul”… to keep from jumping off my cliff-notes.


  4. Ah, man, don’t do that! Listen, if it was easy, would it be worth it? Hone your craft, make connections, and work hard. Do those, and you’re ahead of 99% of other writers out there. Keep that chin up, Rob! Walk with me, and we’ll both get there.

  5. Okay, I’m a little late to the party here, but I’ve listening to the Dragon*Con podcasts and loving them. True, “What Editors Want” did make me a little nervous, but knowledge is power, right?

    At least, that’s what I keep telling myself, as my fingernails continue to get worn to nubs during the submission process.

    The only podcast I had a little problem with was “Things I Wish a Pro Had Told Me.” Very informative, but I take exception to the part when the speaker said, “If you have no publishing credits, you’re not going to get an agent–or at least not one that will do you any good.”

    Okay, I know that everyone’s experience is different, but that’s just not true in my case. I have no publishing credits, and I got an agent at a well-established agency that’s nearly a century old. And I’m pretty sure that my agent is doing me some good–besides giving awesome editorial advice, she’s also the reason why my little book is getting read by editors at major publishing houses (those that, unfortunately, don’t allow unsolicited submissions).

    Like I said, this is an awesome podcast. I just felt the need to write in since hearing a comment like that would have really depressed me during my agent hunt.

  6. Blargh. “I’M listening” not “I’VE listening.” This teaches me to skip my afternoon coffee.

  7. MV, thanks for the post. I hate it when professional authors and editors make sweeping statements like that, for exactly the reasons you cite – it’s depressing and it’s wrong. Unpublished authors can get agents, unagented authors can get published, and published agented authors can get rejected. Nothing is guaranteed.

    Anyway, I’m glad you’re listening to the show and enjoying it. That’s why we do it.


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