Monday, July 26, 2010


When I signed my first contract and turned in my completed manuscript, I believed my part of the deal had been fulfilled. I was wrong. There were so many additional aspects to becoming an author that went beyond finishing the book. Here are a few:

1. Editing;
2. Promotions; and
3. Writing the next book while looking for the next contract is just a small portion of the work waiting for an author.

Eleven books into publishing and the wise advice of a fellow author remains in my head. "Writing is a business. Treat it that way." It involves selling books, making money, and marketing yourself.

Rarely do authors sit behind a desk and let the money roll in. We promote our works; invest our time in book signings and all forms of promotions. With the Internet becoming one big ball of advertisement, authors find themselves involved with social networking, maintaining a website, staying in the loop with Twitter, Facebook, Myspace, and blogs. I'm sure I've left out some. How do you balance all of this against finding time to write while completing the next book.

Time management is the key.

1. Writing a book is only the beginning;
2. Set goals for writing. For example, I'm going to write three (3) pages each day and edit ten (10); and
3. Remember the Internet can be addictive and seductive.
4. Don't allow it to eat up your writing time.
5. Section out the amount of time you spend on any one aspect of writing.

Always keep in mind that writing is a business, just like Ford, GM, and Chrysler are companies who build cars. Every aspect of the writing business needs your attention. An agent can make life easier. At the end of the day, an author must produce another book.

What do you think? E-mail me with your thoughts, or click on the comment link.

Remember, don't be a stranger.



Liane Spicer said...

Well put, Karen. Proper time management is the key.

Farrah Rochon said...

Sage advice, Karen. Managing my time is a constant struggle. I have a hard time considering those non-writing aspects of the business "work", so any day I don't produce actual pages seems like a wasted day. I have to keep reminding myself that this job is more about just the writing. However, the writing remains the more important part.

Jewel Amethyst said...

Thanks for the tips Karen. I'm still trying to figure out how to treat it as a business and not lose the lure and sentiment and enjoyment of writing as a hobby.

Jewel Amethyst said...
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Carol Mitchell said...

This is so important. Thanks for the reminder that this is an important job and must be treated as such.