Thursday, September 2, 2010

It's Like @Thmafi KNOWS Me

Have you SEEN this blog post?

HOW TO WRITE A NOVEL (in 100 easy steps)

I want to post it on every telephone pole in the world. Just think how many hundreds of pages could have been saved from my ignorant pen.

Hundreds! Hundreds of pages of unmarketable slosh. Umm, at least 450, probably more like 500, though, because my first two books were a two-part series.

Still, all joking aside, my early ignorance of the publishing industry was a natural part of the process of becoming a writer. Are there actually people who go out and research everything about the publishing industry before they lift their proverbial pens? I don't think I've ever met one. The hilariously tragic process outlined in @Thmafi's post is almost universal (not to the T, of course). For instance, I really don't think I ever said "fiction novel."

*casts eyes around to see if she's believed*

I can't recall ever using that redundant phrase, anyway, so it must not have happened. Other things I'm not so proud of: the same-socks-for-a-week thing. Gross. And pretty much steps 81-100:

81. reread your book and decide it's perfect. beautiful. brilliant. a million adjectives.

82. decide you're ready to google the publishing industry a bit more. it's time to make money.

83. discover AbsoluteWrite.

84. discover Nathan Bransford.

85. discover Janet Reid.

86. The Rejectionist.

87. Pimp My Novel.

88. Kristen Nelson.

89. Rachelle Gardner.

90. read until your eyes bleed.

91. stare at your book.

92. stare at the internet.

93. stare at your book.

94. stare at the internet.



97. cry.

98. cry.

99. cry.

Yyyup! Pretty much.
Tahereh is a genius.

The good news is that the writer's journey doesn't end there. Well, it can end there--but that is entirely up to you, the writer.

For me, it goes on to

101. Share your work with strangers.
102. Get ripped apart.
103. Feel misunderstood, dejected, sick.
104. Keep writing anyway.
105. Write another (shorter, not series) book.
106. Send 8 query letters.
107. Get 6 rejections and wonder for months about the ones who didn't bother.
108. Get distracted by huge life events (babies, marathons).
109. Dally with writing until you find your VOICE.
110. Write another book (even shorter).
111. Send more than 8 query letters.
112. Get some bites.
113. Find critique partners.
114. Become part of Operation Awesome.
115. Meet an actual, real life agent in person.
116. Attend WriteOnCon.
117. Keep. Writing.


What has your journey been like?


  1. Yup and then you can keep going, can't you? It never ends. At any stage. I'm agented for example, but still stress constantly. But you know what? I wouldn't change ANYTHING!! I'm having the time of my life!

  2. My journey is a mix of yours and TH Mafi's version. :)

    But I don't regret anything. I've learned sooooo much after Suckiest YA Novel Ever, and I plan on learning more in the future.

    Here's to forever!

  3. I loved that blog post too. And your continuation was great, sounded just like me, up until #111. Then #114 (*following* Operation Awesome), and of course, the always ongoing, inevitable #117.

  4. LOL. It's been pretty similar. I'd have to say, though, I've been lucky because my learning curve has been fairly quick compared to most people, mostly because of the blogs and the internet. The wealth of info has been enlightening. But yeah, I'm still a newbie. Whatev. Everyone started there at one point ;)


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