I have previously posted about pushing myself to accomplish tasks that I always put off. I began this blog to complete a manuscript that was 16 years in the making. It was my ultimate project. It was also that stumbling block in my life that I couldn’t get around. I thoroughly enjoyed creating the story for some pretty fantastic characters, in my opinion. But there was just something standing in the way of trying to pull it all together. It was me. I had 5 goals for myself in 2012 and publishing my novel was the only one I didn’t complete.
That was then, this is now.
As you may know, I finally published that novel in October 2013. Acting On Her Behalf.
I have begun work on a second novel. And I plan to do things differently this time.
Here is how you can too…
1. Apply what you learned while writing the first book
I am embarrassed to admit that I began writing the outline for my first book long after I had written a third of the book. Sad but true. It wasn’t until I finished the outline that I was able to truly complete the manuscript. One of my writing idols is bestselling author, James Patterson. He never begins writing a book until after he completes a very detailed and plotted outline.
I also didn’t have a solid marketing plan for promoting my book. I self-published AOHB via Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), which is a great platform, particularly for first-time authors. However, unless you pay for marketing, you are on your own in that department. I lost out on potential sales during the book’s launch because I relied on word-of-mouth and random social media shares.
2. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Just because you have one book already under your belt doesn’t mean you’re a pro. Trusted friends who can give you an honest, unbiased opinion are great sounding boards for your book. Always. They will read the book with fresh eyes and point out aspects that you probably haven’t considered. You can also hire a manuscript editor to give you professional unbiased feedback. Their expertise will provide guidance and direction from a writer’s perspective.
3. Step up your game
You’ve done this before. You can do it again. But the stakes are a little bit higher because this is not your debut. More will be expected from you. If you are a fiction writer like me, make your characters richer and their dialogue stronger. Flesh them out more. If you are writing non-fiction, include a fresh take on your facts and statistics. Incorporate little-known data and insights. Research, research, research.
Stay tuned for updates on my second novel due in 2021.
How are you working to overcome your writing obstacles?
What tips can you add to this list?
See ya later,