Becoming an Author – FAQ

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I get asked a lot of questions on becoming an author from aspiring writers so I thought I’d share some of the most commonly asked questions here. Have some that I missed? Post them in the comments and I’ll try to get to them.

Yes, becoming an author is an uphill battle — but it’s pretty fun.

  1. How hard was it finding a publisher? 
    I actually found my first publisher very easily – which should have been a red flag. Although I’m happy for the lessons I learned from it, it turned out she was pretty much one of those scam publishing houses that everyone warns you about. Live and learn, right? Fortunately, I only had a one book contract with this (shall remain nameless) publishing house and I recently got my rights back to said book. I’ve been working on clean up – good times.
    My 2nd publisher (AZ Publishing) was easy in the sense that I didn’t need to find an agent or go through the rejection process but it took me a good year of relationship building and begging to have them take on my books. LOL Did I mention I’m relentless?
  2. Do ideas come to you easily? 
    Way too easy. I almost laugh when friends try to give me ideas. I have too many to keep up with as it is. I always tell them, if it’s your idea – you should write it!
  3. Do you edit your own work?
    Never! If I can give any advice to an aspiring writer is to please get your work professionally edited. I can’t tell you how many writing groups I’ve been in where the author challenges the group to find a mistake and mistakes are found within the first paragraph. This is on work they swear was perfect. Never ever ever ever edit your own work.
  4. Do you write full time? 
    Yes, I do. But not as a novelist. I’m also a freelance journalist and copywriter. But I do write full time, just not books.
  5. How do you gain readers? 
    By being accessible and real. I see so many authors trying so hard to be something they’re not. Just be yourself and network. It takes time to build a readership but if you’re you then it’ll happen easier.

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  6. How do you get into events? 
    With a publisher! Yes, you can do this when you’re self-published but it’s much easier when you have a publisher who already has a network. Best thing to do is attend events and build relationships.
  7. How do you find the time to write? 
    You need to make time. I have a 6 year old, two other writing jobs that are quite demanding, a husband, a daunting travel schedule and a million reasons why I don’t need to write — as we all do. But if you really want it, you’ll find a way. We all have 24 hours in our day, it’s just a matter of what you do with it.
  8. How do you prepare to write?
    I don’t. Preparation is the fastest road to procrastination. Just write. You can do research along the way.
  9. Do you attend writers workshops? 
    Sadly, I haven’t. You’re already familiar with my ‘accidental writer’ story – and so I’ve never attended one. I’ve actually spoken at a few as an author but never actually attended one. However, I’m such an avid reader that I am always learning by picking up as many books as I can. I also write at least 500 words on a day so I’m constantly working on my craft.
  10. How many words a day do you write?
    I try to make chapter goals. When I’m editing (like I’m doing now) I can either go super fast or super slow on editing. Depending on the book. Right now, it’s super slow.

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5 thoughts on “Becoming an Author – FAQ

  1. After reading Becoming an Author – FAQ, I found it…interesting. Be yourself, learn from your mistakes, hone your craft. This is sound advice that could be adapted to many careers. Even to non-writers like me. Good information!

  2. You truly are an inspiration. I am in awe in all that you accomplished. I wish you well on all other books you write and can’t wait to read them. I wish I had the imagination to write such great stories.

  3. I am constantly amazed at all the work you do on your books and still balance a home life with your family. You are determined and it is paying off! I look forward to reading all you do. I am so glad you branch out into different genres as you seem to write so well in each!

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