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Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Are you READY to submit?

Just before Christmas I read a FAB post written by author, Sarah Duncan. Sarah and her agent give advice that I think all aspiring authors should read. It's particularly pertinent if you're itching to send out a partial of an unfinished manuscript. Click here to read it.

Once upon a time in the not too distant past I *used* to be that very writer, wanting to send out my work before I'd finished. Of course, at the time I couldn't see it - despite receiving advice (and lots of it) to the contrary. It's taken me a good few years to open my eyes to the bigger picture, but when I first read Sarah Duncan's blog post I realised that I have learnt a few things:
  1. No writing is EVER wasted. 
  2. EVERYTHING is a learning curve.
  3. Perseverance is KEY.
  4. Never Give Up (and believe me, I need to remind myself of this all the time).
  5. RESIST the temptation to submit before you've finished the book (or in the words of PHS...FINDABOO aka finish the damned book!).
  • Yes, it's blooming HARD work -  so expect it.
  • Yes, it's EMOTIONALLY draining and TIRING - so be prepared for it. 
 There's likely to be the odd rejection letter or three BUT you should see each and every one of these as an ACHIEVMENT. You've succeeded on one of the crucials steps to being a writer - you've written a whole book! You can hold your head high and tell people that you're now a writer who's aspiring to be published.

With every book that Graham and I have finished since 2007 we've learnt even more for the next.  It's amazing how much you continue to learn about your characters and their stories AFTER you've written 'The End' on the first draft.

Where are you in the learning curve as a writer aspiring to publication? What are your current goals and where are you in the process?