Welcome to Writer's Secret Sauce:

The Recipe for Going Pro


We're Dani Alcorn Laura Backes

Head Chefs at Writer's Secret Sauce

We started Writer’s Secret Sauce because we saw aspiring writer after aspiring writer struggle with the same thing. They saw the chasm between where they were and where they wanted to be and had no idea how to bridge that distance.


We put on our chef’s hats and started analyzing successful authors and realized there was a method to their madness. There was a recipe for success. And we realized that recipe could be taught.


Years Experience


Writing Classes


Happy Students

Our Achievements.

We know what we're talking about when it comes to writing. Collectively, we've got decades of experience guiding writers through their careers.

About Us

Dani Alcorn

I’m the Chief Operating Officer at Writing Academy. I’m also a writing instructor, editor, and mentor.


I trained in screenwriting at Northwestern University and worked as a professional medical writer before taking Writing Academy full-time.


I now work with aspiring authors at all stages, from those just learning to structure their stories to those ready to get into print.


I'm an avid cook and baker and you can usually find me in the kitchen, distracting my cats with pats of butter, while I whip up a brand new recipe.


Laura Backes

I've worked in book publishing since 1986. In 1990 I launched Children's Book Insider, the Children's Writing Monthly, and, along with my husband Jon Bard, created


In 2015 we developed the site, which houses online writing courses and webinars on writing, editing and publishing books for children and teens.


I'm also a co-founder of the Picture Book Summit online writing conference, which was also established in 2015.

Our Services.

Lots of people (including us—at Writing Blueprints and Writing Academy) teach writing craft skills.


What's unique about Writer's Secret Sauce is that we focus on "Everything But Craft" when it comes to what you need to know to be a successful author.

The Recipe for Going Pro


Check out our Facebook page to stay in touch and see examples of secret sauce authors in action.


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What People Say

The new writer’s course that Dani Alcorn and Laura Backes have cooked up is simply superb! I would have LOVED to have a course like this when I was starting out as a writer

In fact, established writers will find great tips and tricks for marketing, branding, and how to keep their career going in these special recipe lessons, too. Chock full of all of the ingredients that make a successful writing career, Dani and Laura really address some of the concerns that writers have such as, building success from the ground up, developing skills and the ever important (and often ignored), thinking like a business person.  


I HIGHLY recommend this course to all writers, regardless of level. This is one workshop that will give you the confidence you need to stay the path and succeed as a writer!

Jennifer Swanson

Award-winning children’s author

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