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Being a debut author/getting published

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message 1: by Jon (new)

Jon Cross | 5 comments Barricade
As a debut author you have described the roller-coaster ride leading up to the publishing and since publication, over the last month.
What would you say are the top 3 things you've learnt?
and are you aware of what you'll do differently when book 2 is released?
Also congratulations sir! and inspiring and excellent debut!!


message 2: by Sci-Fi Lover (new)

Sci-Fi Lover | 8 comments I was wondering what advice you had for a writer with a book who wants to get it published?


message 3: by Jon (new)

Jon Wallace (jon__wallace) | 20 comments Mod
Jon wrote: "Barricade
As a debut author you have described the roller-coaster ride leading up to the publishing and since publication, over the last month.
What would you say are the top 3 thi..."
As always, an ace question. Ed Cox, Den Patrick and I discussed this at our London Film and Comic Con event, albeit briefly.

One thing I've learned is that you need to have serious patience, but be prepared for sudden bursts of activity: when you send off your manuscript to agents you wait AGES to hear anything, then suddenly, there are meetings to go to, you're signing contracts, and you're looking for a publisher. Then, once you get a deal (woo-hoo!), you have to wait a fair while for publication. I had to wait over a year and it can seem very far away.

Then suddenly Boom! it's a couple of weeks to launch and you have to write a stack of blogs, do interviews and attend events - which is all completely brilliant obviously, but a bit of a jolt after all that waiting. I guess the longer you're in the game the more you get used to it.

Second thing I've learned is that it really helps to have good people to run your writing by for advice - besides my excellent editor, Simon, I have a few friends and family who I send my work to for comments. I trust them to give honest feedback and it helps enormously - it might sound a bit obvious but it makes a huge difference to have constructive criticism available from people you respect.

Third thing is that if and when you get a bad review, try and keep in mind that while it seems a big deal at first, in a few weeks you'll wonder why you were so fussed. It stings to get a dodgy review, but like most things in life you ride the wave of emotion and then find yourself back to normal - and if anything a little stronger for it.


message 4: by Jon (new)

Jon Wallace (jon__wallace) | 20 comments Mod
Sci-Fi wrote: "I was wondering what advice you had for a writer with a book who wants to get it published?" I think it depends on the person, but I think there's a few simple ways you can improve your chances:

1.Get some stories published. I think it can only help the strength of a novel submission if it's accompanied by an existing publication history. Plus it hones your skills: I find stories hard freaking work and get a real sense of accomplishment to whip one into a state I like. There remain a number of great online and print publications, some of which even pay for stories. I got my first story published in a (sadly now defunct) site called Absent Willow Review, and built up to mags like Interzone - a mag which has a lot of respect.

2. Get that novel's opening as perfect as you can. My Dad always used to judge a book by its opening paragraph and I'll bet you a whole heap of agents and editors do too.

3. Once you have it as good as it can be, show it to someone you trust and ask for their honest opinion - they will often spot anything from silly typos to gaping plot holes that you just miss when it's your baby.


message 5: by Sci-Fi Lover (new)

Sci-Fi Lover | 8 comments great advice! thanks!


message 6: by Jon (new)

Jon Cross | 5 comments yeah GREAT answers across the board sir! this is an awesome Q&A


message 7: by Jon (new)

Jon Wallace (jon__wallace) | 20 comments Mod
Jon wrote: "yeah GREAT answers across the board sir! this is an awesome Q&A" Thanks man!


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