Writing

  • Giving someone a first draft manuscript is a big mistake people tend to make. Be patient and let it sit for 2-3 months if possible then come back to the draft with a fresh mind to address mistakes.
  • To get the best possible storyline you may want to consider setting the scene somewhere intimate to you. This will help the audience connect to the story.
  • A real secret to writing is to read as much as you can. Reading can help get your brain flowing with new and exciting ideas.
  • Try writing poetry in your downtime. It helps to focus on the words rather than the whole picture.

Editing

  • The editing process is extremely important. Being harsh with your work and making it tight is the key. Read and proof read, fix the mistakes first then ask someone you trust to go through it with you to see what you missed and make it a tighter fit. You could also think about paying an editor to look over your work to get some more input and advice.
  • Choosing a basic font will help publishers read your work and make it look more professional.
  • Nail the little things like your cover letter and synopsis. Make sure they are clear and direct.

Publishing

  • Do your research and understand what publishers want before approaching one with your draft. You shouldn’t decide to work with a publisher if you don’t agree with their policies. Following their guidelines is very important because they will reject you straight away if you can’t follow simple instructions.
  • Avoid careless errors e.g. sending an email with the file not attached.
  • Be persistent. Publishers get thousands of submissions daily, so there will be rejections, but keep submitting your stuff and refining your pitch.
  • When a publisher calls, make sure you know your work well and know what it is all about. Publishers will not be on board if you cannot pitch your stories strongly and clearly.
  • There will always be good and bad reviews, the key is to have confidence in yourself and don’t take things too personally.
  • Lastly, remember to be kind and stay humble.