Whoever would have thought that I’d be one of those obnoxious writers with a “How to write a nove with three easy steps?” Not me. Yet, as I stare as the plan for this blog post (all in the mind… don’t freak out. I’m not that organized or forethoughtful), it occurs to me that this is really what this post is–in a weird sort of way.
But seriously. There really are three parts to writing for me. The first is obviously the plot. I mean, I may be a character-driven writer, but without a plot, no character, no matter how cool they are, will hold attention long enough to keep people reading. Characters have to do something. Plot. Plot usually isn’t a problem for me. My characters all come with stories already. My job is to figure out which stories need to be told, and which ones no one but me cares about.
Plodding, however, that isn’t as easy. It’s the whole, “You can’t just have it all ‘filed away in your imagination’ like Anne Shirley” thing. Having it all in your head doesn’t help a reader. I have to type it out. I have to keep going. I have to show self-control and keep writing when a new project tempts me. I have to do this because if I don’t, the story never gets to…
Publishing. Of the three, this probably seems easiest. Nope. It’s the hardest. Seriously. First you plan, then you work, and then you REALLY work. Publishing is like being “almost there” and the rest of the way is uphill, against the wind, and with rain beating down on you. You have to edit. Then you have to send to an editor. Then you have to edit some more. When you go nuts you have to work on cover art. Then you have to edit. You have to write a back synopsis. You have to decide what information to share. You find the perfect artwork idea and then realize it doesn’t work. Back to the drawing board. Your editor returns the manuscript with a solid red bar of corrections down the side of the page.
Now you’re done, right? Nope. Then you proof. You fix the proofs. You proof some more. And, while you wait for the next book to arrive, you plan marketing. You get that book out there. You notify everyone who has ever bought from you that it’s coming. You do blog posts, facebook parties, and more blog posts. You send out review copies and pray that the errors in them are minor.
Yeah. Plotting, Plodding, and Publishing. See, three little things. It’s down right simple. Anyone can do it. So what are you waiting for?
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