I’m delighted to welcome fellow Wild Rose Press author Lynne Marshall as my guest here today! Don’t forget to comment and leave your email address for a chance to win in Lynn’s giveaway!
Thank you so much for inviting me to your blog. First off, let me congratulate you on all of the awesome reviews for Clear As Day, your current release from Wild Rose Press.
As you know, writing a book is half of the equation, and the second and often more difficult part is getting that book published. (Yes, we do have self-publishing options these days, which is great, but for the purpose of this blog, SP won’t be my focus).
After having fifteen books published in the traditional manner, I would like to offer your blog readers some words of advice.
How do you get from here – new author with manuscript under arm – to there – published?
You’ve probably already joined a writer’s group. If not, do so, immediately. Joining a group comprised of like-minded people is life-changing. There is much to learn and mentorship is the key. Listen to the wise ones in your new tribe. Their experiences can save you time and heartache. There are organizations for every writing genre.
Do you know where your manuscript belongs? If not, figure it out, immediately.
For me it was the Romance Writers of America, and I often say I owe everything I’ve learned about writing and publishing to both the National organization and my home chapter of RWA. Each attended meeting introduced me to new information on publishing, craft, writing opportunities, future critique partners, and a handful of eventual lifetime friends. Each workshop taught me new skills to apply to my novice novel. Each National conference lifted another veil from my dream-influenced eyes.
Go forth. Join. Learn.
Don’t Just Take Notes
Roll up your sleeves. Invest more time in the process of getting published. Write every day, even if only a few lines. Read everyday. Plop down some money for writing classes. Follow through on what you glean from workshops and author lectures. Apply this new knowledge to your work in progress. Don’t be offended by honest critiques. Learn from them, apply whatever makes sense. Ignore the snarky comments, but grow thicker skin and quit being so easily offended. Be open to suggestions.
Rewrite. Edit. Delete. Begin again. This is the process. It cannot be ignored.
Life is filled with synchronicity. When you’re on the right path opportunities seem to naturally arise. A chance meeting with an editor at a writers’ conference may open a door in the future. Be aware. Be prepared. Maybe you’ve entered a contest or signed on for an agent or editor appointment and they’ve requested a partial or a full. Don’t panic. Follow through.
Polish and send in the requested material. A high percentage of writers don’t do this. Don’t be one of them. Revisions are inevitable. Do them. Rejection is part of the process. Get used to it. Don’t entertain defeat. Move on to the next opportunity and project.
Know when to let go
My first manuscript, the one that opened the door to the amazing world of writing and publishing, resides in a box on the top shelf of my office storage closet along with several other completed novels. And though it will never see the inside of a book cover, it is one of my most prized possessions. Though it does happen, chances are your first manuscript won’t get published. Love it for all it has taught you. Remember the myriad lessons when you begin your next book.
Several years into this dream you’ve honed with passion and knowledge, thousands of aspiring writers have already fallen away or given up, but not you. You’ve amassed information, grown a bit wiser, increased your network, improved your writing skills, and you’re excited about your next project. Maybe this will be the one. For all of your hard work, and most especially for your positive attitude, I commend you. Perseverance is the single most important quality that will help you make that first sale.
What words of advice would you give an aspiring author?
For the readers out there, what would you like authors to know?
Giveaway: I’d love to offer one lucky commenter a copy of my award winning WRP book – One for the Road (either print or e-book – the winner’s choice) Don’t forget your email.
Lynne Marshall (www.lynnemarshall.com) is a multi-published category romance author for Harlequin, Mills & Boon in the Medical Romance and Special Edition lines. Watch for NYC Angels – Making the Surgeon Smile (June 2013 – Medical Romance) and The Medics Homecoming (July 2013 – Special Edition). Lynne also writes longer books for The Wild Rose Press Last Rose of Summer line. Her latest book is TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT, a reunion romance featuring over-forty characters. For the blurb and an excerpt from the book check out my BOOKS page.