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Sandra's New Book for First-Time Authors

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“Irreverent.” “Funny.” “Essential.”

Read this book before you publish your book.

You just wrote your first book. And there you are. Stark naked. Vulnerable. Wondering what to do next to get your masterpiece published.

This is the one book you need to read and follow if you’re writing a book for the first time. Why? Because you’ve never written a book before. This is new territory.

To write a successful book, you need to find and work with an editor who shares your passion for your work and your message and who will help you make your book sing. And sing a smash hit. A blockbuster of a message, clearly and carefully constructed so readers love you and your work and leave you five-star Amazon reviews only because they don’t have more stars to give.

This is a toolkit for tinkering under the hood of your working manuscript so you, the author, can take your work as far as you can before an edit and production such as cover design and not dump a half-baked chocolate cake on some poor schlub of an editor to “fix.”

Get your questions answered (and more):

  • Why do I need an editor? How do I find an editor? What do editors do? And how much do they cost?

  • What are the levels of edit? Developmental? Line edit? Copy edit? Proofreading? How do I know what level of editing my manuscript needs?

  • Will an editor tell me if my manuscript sucks?

  • Why do words make a difference? Which words do I overuse? Which words should I never use?

  • How do I know when I’m done writing?

  • How can I work with a cover designer and audiobook engineer?

  • Can my local bookstore help me? Do I need beta readers?

Join the First-Time Author's Club

Learn how to survive the writing and publishing of your first book. The first-time author's club is an open and safe forum for new authors who have written a book (or want to). Feeling overwhelmed? Want to know more about writing, editing, and publishing? Join us. 

Other Books by Sandra Wendel

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Being present at the bedside—and even at the moment of death—can become an experience embedded in the minds and souls of family members for generations. It is a deeply emotional time, one of relief and sadness. Anyone who has taken that final journey with a loved one will never, ever forget those moments.


Dr. Edward Creagan, a palliative and hospice specialist at Mayo Clinic, has dedicated his life to death. And now this esteemed medical doctor examines death, not only from a medical standpoint, but from an acutely emotional perspective as events beyond our control unfold. Sandra Wendel is the coauthor of Farewell: Vital End-of-Life Questions with Candid Answers.


For more than forty years, he has been at the bedside with patients, addressing the end-of-life questions patients and their families ask. This book is about navigating those last days, at the bedside, and saying farewell with hope, love, and compassion.

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Triple-award-winning book. Sandra Wendel coauthored with Edward Creagan, MD, the entirely revised second edition of their popular book: How Not to Be My Patient: A Physician’s Secrets for Staying Healthy and Surviving Any Diagnosis. Read the book’s Introduction and see the book trailer at 

“Now let me turn to the one person who has been a catalyst, the flame, the engine driving this subject: Sandra Wendel. My tenacious and patient coauthor is the consummate wordsmith who magically transformed our ideas from a casual telephone conversation several years ago into a masterpiece — again.” Edward T. Creagan, MD, Mayo Clinic cancer specialist.

  • Benjamin Franklin Award, Silver (health), 2015

  • Indiefab Book of the Year Award, Silver (health), 2015

  • Midwest Book Awards, finalist, 2015

Chewish: 36 Recipes of Love with Stories from Nama’s Kitchen, a tribute to my grandmother, a bit of memoir with a dash of recipes (2016). Invited to be archived in the University of Iowa’s special collection on Iowa Jewish Women. Read more about the book at

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