Monday, April 17, 2017

Things To Know To Be A Successful Author - Question from a writer

Here is my question: I know you must have gone over these points a dozen times by now, but if you have a moment, would you mind giving a refresher; a concise list of what 10 (less or more - your choice) are the most important things a would-be author "needs" to learn in order to become a successful author? Something to be put on a poster and hung over the writing desk. You're absolutely right. We all need focus. Thank-you!!!

This is a great question. Yes, I am talking about this a lot here on the blog. There are just a lot of writers out there who have just sat down in front of their computers and started writing. Many of those people then start sending out projects to editors and agents, or even start publishing through independent channels without really knowing how things work in this business or even if their stories are great. I have also had several authors who have had stories with some potential that I have signed, and when we get going on moving to that next level, they panic, seeing that they are indeed far from ready.

So, with that said, here are some things to consider. I am not sure if there is an exact list here, but this can probably get you going... I am going to try to sort these by general topics as well.

  • The components of a successful story 
  • The balance between narrative and dialogue
  • The role of plotting and planning
  • Successful query letters
  • Successful synopsis writing
  • How to identify problems in your book and fix the problems in a reasonable amount of time

  • Roles and responsibilities of people in the industry including agents, editors, copy editors, marketing offices and so forth.
  • The procedure for submitting projects
  • The time it takes from proposal to print
  • Understanding the elements of contracts
  • The role of the revision process with editors and agents

  • The reasonable amount of time necessary to maintain a writing career
  • Balancing writing and marketing time
  • The time that will be taken from family and your full time job.
  • The need for authors attending conferences
  • The time necessary to get revisions completed

  • Understanding the role of web presence
  • The author's role for marketing books
  • The cost of marketing
  • Effective strategies for getting your name out there

That should get you going. Much of this, I should note, are things that take time to learn. This is not something you learn overnight, so be prepared to take your time. Don't rush the process!

1 comment:

  1. Thank-you so much for your reply. Wow! I'm so glad to have this list. I have so many holes to fill with knowledge. Ok. List in hand. I can do this. Again, thanks so much! Kate M.