Thursday, May 10, 2012

On writing a novel...what I've learned

I was January of last year when I first began this journey to complete my first novel. Now I'm happy to announce that I'm finally finished at last! I have learned a lot along the way. I feel like the most important and best lessons I've learned just in the past few weeks, so I thought I'd share.

  • I don't really know how to write. Or at least I didn't, up until now. Hopefully I've finally learned, albeit the hard way. Up until this past round of edits I think I never knew how to properly punctuate dialogue, or how to remain in the present active voice throughout. This is so embarrassing to me, but then again, it's not like I ever went to school for this! And I have learned, through trial and error how to do all these things properly, I HOPE!
  • It will never be perfect. As soon as I re-saved the document entitled "London Escape - final cut" and sent it to my kindle I read the first page and immediately spotted something I wanted to change. That's just the nature of the beast, I suppose. Like I said, hopefully it's as perfect as I can manage.
  • You can't do this sort of thing alone. I don't know where I'd be without all the constant support, help and enthusiasm from all my friends and family. Part of the reason I didn't completely throw in the towel when my publishing attempts failed was because I knew there were at least a few people out there wanting to read my novel, even if I only e-published. And for that I will be eternally grateful.
  • What else have I learned? I love, love, love writing and telling stories. Clearly it is my passion in life. But it is not my life. When I made the decision to halt on my queries and simply e-publish I thought I would be devastated. After all, I had failed to make my dreams come true. Or had I? It was then that I realized my dream was not to publish, but to write books. And that's what I'm doing. If it sells 50 or 5,000 copies it shouldn't make any difference in how I view myself.
  • What else? Oh yeah, I'm going to keep doing this: forever. As you already know I'm more than halfway through with the follow-up to London Escape, so I'll be excited again to release it in the coming fall. After that who knows, Kit's story isn't over, and neither as mine. There will at least one final book in the Halcyon Legacy, rounding it out to a full trilogy. After that, who knows. Maybe I will move on to a different character and a different genre and find some semblance of commercial success. All I know is that I'm not going to stop writing. I love the ride far to much to give it up now!

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