Writing advice with a touch of humor
- I’m not a grammar and punctuation Nazi, but when it comes to writing books, I need someone who is.
If you’re looking for an editor, there are hundreds of people willing to take your money. If you have $4000 just lying around waiting to be spent, do your research and you can find an attentive, thorough editor.
If, like me, there’s a sibling in your family who is the world’s best editor but hates to edit, you have a resource who can tell you whether the editor you want to hire has the skills to do the job.
I have yet to find a course in professional begging, but I seem to have a gift for it. If I beg hard enough, there are times my sister will actually read over manuscripts and remind me just how bad I am at punctuation.
2. Covers, interior design, and uploading.
Interior Design and uploading: Aaaaarrrruuuuggghhh!!!!!!!!! Don’t go there if you have the computer skills of a cat.
Try to find a package deal with someone who does covers — and uploads interiors, too. Jo Robinson formatted the interior, uploaded the interior, created this cover for me…
...And I didn’t have to mortgage my house to pay for it.
3. Advice coming from people who don’t read books, or write, is worthless.
When s/he says, “You’ll never be famous,” ask yourself if s/he is any closer to fame than you are at this time. If the answer is no, smile and say, “Neither will you.”
Or you can just smile and say, “I write because I love to do it. If I never make a dime from it, I’ll be just as happy.”
You will be amazed at how quickly your happiness over the act of writing without expectations will shut someone the hell up.
Worse yet are the people who send you links to names of publishing companies for “do-it-yourself writers” that they heard about on some talk radio program.
Type into a search engine “Complaints about (name of publisher here).” I would bet a free copy of my next book that the list of complaints will give you nightmares.
4. Honing your writing.
Search for “Writing prompts” on the WordPress reader. Pick a few.
Chris the Story Reading Ape has a treasure chest of resources. https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/authors-resources-central/
You could spend money on a writing course. I’ve taken several, and I can only describe it as akin to playing roulette.
I took two writing courses in college. The first was excellent. The second one was, to be kind, dreadful.
I’ve taken three on-line writing courses and the one I liked the best was called “Immediate Fiction.” Unfortunately, the instructor died a few years ago and I know nothing about the people who took over the course.
Gotta go. The cat wants to be fed, and there are some priorities in life that can’t be ignored.