Writing a book, it sounds so romantic. Sitting at a desk or table watching the sun rise over the ocean, because you do your best work in the morning. A hot cup of coffee, some toast, your favorite music playing in the background. Wow, now it even feels romantic.
You begin and every word in every sentence is perfect. No need to re-read or edit because everything is absolutely, perfect. Sentences become paragraphs then pages followed by chapters and soon 80,000 + words are written by you, the author.
No reason to find an agent, who needs one, you did it, you wrote the perfect book. Except one minor detail seems to be going against what you pictured would be a happy ending. Other than mom and dad, aunt and uncle, a few cousins and friends, the book is not setting the literary world on fire. Uh-oh, another little problem, no one gave you feed back, no one has told you that they could not get past chapter 4. Why? Sadly the book is boring, the story is the one you always wanted to write and you did. Congratulations! But no one wants to read it.
In today's multi media stimulated world people want one thing, to be entertained and fast. That means when they decide to read a book you need to capture them in the opening few sentences and paragraphs hopefully to the very end. It needs to be "a page turner," with the following statement, "I couldn't put it down!"
Holly shit! Talk about pressure, now as a writer you are expected to write a compelling story that is entertaining, exciting, thought provoking, descriptive, along with interesting characters. I'm exhausted just writing that. Oh, even if that news weren't daunting enough there are over 3,000,000 books available on Amazon alone.
If you are like me you march uncaring into the night and often times take the road least traveled. The problem with that route is that sometimes your timeline gets screwed up and it takes a little longer than you expected. But we're tough, we can do it, and we do. If we keep our eyes open we find signposts and strangers that help guide us on our long, long journey.
I would like to share just a few with you.
These are in no particular order, but collectively they are very helpful.
Sooner or later you will be working with an editor and if they are worth anything they will help push you to a level you were not aware you could achieve. Just imagine what being the "best" at something really means. No one remembers boring and mediocre, only great.
The best way to talk about this book and its author is to copy and paste a sampling of his bio. Pretend for a moment you are interviewing Editors and your budget is under $20. You might consider Mr. Stein's book for the following reason.
Become thirsty for knowledge. Read Stephen King's: On Writing, A Memoir of the Craft. Everyone starts at the beginning, even the famous authors. They starved and struggled, but the top ones never gave up.
Another excellent opportunity, listen to James Patterson talk and teach people how to write a novel. It costs $90 and believe me, if you are serious about writing it is the best $90 you will ever spend. https://www.masterclass.com/
These are but a few suggestions. Every writer has particular way on how they go about writing a novel, but these words from Sol Stein and other resonate loudly.
"We as writers have a relationship with our readers. We owe it to them to write the most compelling and interesting stories we can."
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