Q. I want to be a writer. What do I do?
A. Read voraciously.
Write crap. Then write it again and again, ’til it’s not so crappy.
Join Twitter and follow your favorite writers. You’ll be amazed at how gracious the writing community is! Search for these hashtags: #amwriting, #askagent, and #litchat.
Find writer’s groups that meet near you and join.
Books to read on writing:
On Writing by Stephen King
Bird to Bird: Some Thoughts on Writing & Life by Anne Lamott
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
Have a question about the publishing process?
Check out literary agent Rachelle Gardner’s blog archives. If you can find a topic Rachelle hasn’t covered on her blog– I owe you a drink. Her explanations are clear, concise and often linked to other resources and posts that will increase your knowledge.
Need an editor to help you polish your manuscript?
Hire a freelance editor– with references.
Anne Riley at Yellowhammer Literary Services (I have others I can recommend via email.)
Looking for a literary agent?
Read the comments section of writers with a similar voice or style to your own. Most of the time they will thank their agent by name– then put those cyberstalking skillz to work! The more you know about an agents’ tastes and preferences, the better your letter to them will be.
Go to WRITER’S conferences! Agents and editors actually go to these too! You might meet one!
Need help writing a query letter?
Literary Agent Janet Reid will help you on her blog, The Query Shark. She chooses letters submitted to her blog at random and critiques them. Be brave and submit your own, or lurk around on her site and learn from what others are doing right and wrong!
Self publishing and need a killer cover design?
Check out 99designs, professional designers compete to give you the best cover possible and a great price!
“But how did YOU do it? How did you publish a book from your couch and end up on the NYT best sellers list?”
I taught a workshop about precisely this at the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop in Dayton, OH in 2014. You can purchase the mp3 for $12, here, if you want copies of the handouts, email me at robinschicks(at)gmail(dot)com and I’ll be happy to forward them to you. All money goes back into the Erma Workshop. And just fyi, it’s the best writer’s conference I’ve ever been to.
Looking for ways to promote your published book online? Here are a few resources that offer affordable & profitable book promos!
Looking for book bloggers?
Q. How did you get your agent?