Friday Conversations With A Self-Publishing Writer 01/02/15

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Have you written your “list” yet?  Your “to-do” list of what you want to accomplish in the New Year?  One person I know writes out a This-Will-Never-Happen-In-My-Life-Again list.  Another creates a list titled: I Will Never Think of These Things Again!  Yep.  We all have ways of dealing with the beginning of the New Year—or the beginning of anything new.  However, from my writer’s perspective, I hold on to a lot of things from years and years ago—all those unfinished manuscripts that I’ll get to, someday.

Thomas Jefferson (the fella who wrote the Declaration of Independence and became the 3rd President of the United States of America) said: I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.  He was a BIG dreamer, that’s for sure, and his writings have encouraged and inspired millions of people long after his departure from this earth.  I remember a history teacher saying that Jefferson considered writing the greatest gift given to humans because they could then see their thoughts on paper and re-consider them.

One of my favorite authors, C. S. Lewis is quoted saying, “The future [is] something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.”  Gosh, why didn’t I think of that?  Does he mean that when I try to find time to complete the manuscript of my current book, I could, if I would?  I do become a bit annoyed with myself when “time flies by” so quickly and I’m letting myself be stuck on a point of minutia research.  When will I learn to “move along” and come back to that piece in the re-write?

SO…here is my 2015 New Year’s list for writers…you and me:

  1. Follow David Copperfield’s advice when he says, “My dreams are my dress rehearsals for my future.” Literally, allow yourself to dream about plotlines and characters. The writing will flow easier and faster.
  2. READ at least one excellent book a month! If the book doesn’t meet expectations within the first 50 pages, set it aside and select another. Time is precious and we only want to absorb the best writing techniques.
  3. WATCH movies or a television series that is similar to the genre you’re writing. Visually capture actions and events and the essence of the characters, especially their attitudes.
  4. LISTEN to a “Talk” radio or TV show and make notes on the guests as well as a few of the interesting questions and responses. Many of the guests will be actors and they often offer insights into HOW they develop their on-screen personae.
  5. TALK more often to Librarians and bookstore staff. They are the folks who know books and know about the people who purchase them. Recommendations from them, about books in my/our genre, are extremely valuable.
  6. SCHEDULE daily writing time!!!!!! Whether it is 15-minutes or 8 hours a day, guard that time with your life and WRITE something that develops your project.
  7. PLAN publishing!!! If you are a person to must have your manuscript “accepted” by a mainstream publisher, start developing your strategy to break through those very thick doors. However, as you know by my previous blogs, I highly encourage all writers to do their research in the self-publishing field and get your book in print! It literally breaks my heart when I see authors languishing and unable to write their next book because they’re “waiting to hear” from a mainstream submissions editor.

A final thought: this month opens the 2015 door to many new and wonderful adventures.  May your published book(s) be among them!

Royalene ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene Doyle is a Ghostwriter with Outskirts Press, bringing more than 35 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their writing projects. She has worked with both experienced and fledgling writers helping complete projects in multiple genres. When a writer brings the passion they have for their work and combines it with Royalene’s passion to see the finished project in print, books are published and the writer’s legacy is passed forward.

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