Stepping into the writing universe is exciting for a new author. Colorful, fascinating, wonderful, and a bit overwhelming. Like Alice falling down the rabbit hole, most writers are amazed when they realize how vast this new world actually is. Craft, publishing, graphic design, social media, marketing, formatting: the list goes on and on. Wide-eyed, I dipped my toe in, got sucked through the looking glass, and haven’t looked back.
There’s so much to know and learn, more than you could ever imagine. You join the party, enthusiastic, fumbling along at Hatter’s table, hoping someone will eventually pass the tea.
Be prepared. Writing, publishing, and marketing said writing are huge endeavors that take time and a ton of effort. If you’re thinking about writing with the goal of publishing, make sure to do your research. A lot of research. The more you puff on the caterpillar’s pipe, the more you will come to understand the writing world is a freaking wonderland.
Learning the craft of writing is something that takes effort and practice. Discovering new skills and implementing them in my own work to make it stronger is the part I have come to love most. I thrive on learning. Every aspect of writing now fascinates me.
I’m a newbie writer. I’ve published two novels and two novellas. I’m working on my third novel now. And each and every time I move on to the next book, I realize that if I could go back to the previous work and rewrite it with my current skill set, I would write a better book now. Because between the first book and the fifth I have improved by leaps and bounds. But I had to start somewhere, everyone does. I may have never started at all if I didn’t wake up one morning and decide to write to begin with.
I don’t regret my first book, I cherish it.
It was a huge accomplishment to write and publish it, and I’m proud of myself. My characters and the storyline are near and dear to me. But I can’t wait to see how this next one turns out. I’m taking my time on this one. Slow and steady. Looking at motivations, foreshadowing, misdirection, and subtext. I’m excited to take another step forward on my journey.
I have to give a ton of credit to my fabulous editor, Patricia D. Eddy. She’s taught me more things about writing, developing story, and creating characters with my last three books than I could’ve ever fathomed on my own. Experiencing a round of professional editing, with a real editor who knows what they’re talking about and has your best interests at heart, is priceless. A whole new world opens up. You see what your writing is and what it could be with practice. A new appreciation for your favorite books wells up inside. You also begin to notice flaws in books you read that you probably would never have noticed before.
Find a writing group. The Writing Wenches are some of the most generous and encouraging people I’ve ever met. I love my writer friends. I learn from them every day. Being part of the writing community is truly an honor. Join.
When it comes down to it, don’t be afraid of learning the craft. Embrace it. Goble it up. Soak it up. Revel in it. If you love writing and storytelling, savor this journey. You may discover your own wonderland.
I was born and raised in San Francisco, CA, and have a husband and two children. Music is an addiction. I can often be found in the car, singing along at the top of my lungs to whatever is playing. I work full time, and I split my spare time between family, reading, blogging, and writing. I’m a habitual quoter. Lines from films and TV shows constantly pop into my head—my kids are the only ones that really get it. I’m an only child, and so of course I married a man who is one of ten children. Other than English, I speak Spanish, Moroccan, and a little French. I love to travel, but don’t do enough of it. Reading has been a passion for most of my life and I now love writing. I’m klutz, and in my own mind, I’m hilarious.
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