^ Welcome Introduction – Podcast 1:41
10 Basic Skills Every Writer Should Know
Hi, I’m Author Peter Green. Here’s my free guide to secrets of the publishing world and getting started in your writing career. As I learned about both publishing and the uses of cyberspace, I made a lot of wrong turns, detours and false starts. In an effort to spare you that bumbling approach, I’m sharing what I learned on this site–an overview of the writing and publishing industry. Happy reading and writing!
Welcome to A Writer’s Journey new multimedia guide to traditional and self-publishing. It’s intended for writers, independent “indie” publishers, self-publishers, interested readers and anyone else who wants an audience for their writing or who just loves books. From my own experience in many years of writing and a lifetime of reading, I’ve learned a thing or two. Most recently, I discovered the publishing industry, like our own starry cosmos, is expanding at light warp speed toward an immense extent and population.
My goal is to provide a free introduction to this world, based on my own journey, in an outline of the 10 Basic Skills Every Writer Should Know. I also will include articles by my fellow writers, collaborators and other experts who have something to contribute to this complex story. What follows is an outline of what I have already included on this site and plan to cover in the months to come.
Having something to say and expressing it well is the entry ticket to the writer’s world. To merit publication by someone else, it must be said clearly, correctly and expertly and often artfully. Here are some ideas to get you started
^ Web Page v Podcast. MP3, 6:00
I asked award-winning mystery and suspense writer John Lutz his advice on writing mystery and suspense. Here’s what he had to say
You have a story to tell. If it’s an autobiography, it’s not necessarily interesting just because it happened to you. To get your readers to buy, read and enjoy your book you’ve got to give them a reason to care. If it’s a biography, to get your readers to buy, read and enjoy your book you’ve got to give them a reason to care.
Mark Twain said, “Everybody talks about the weather. Nobody does anything about it.” But as a writer, you have total control. You can set the location, climate zone, season and particular type of weather in your story–to set the mood, reveal your characters’ feelings or even act as a character.
If you want a wider public to read your book, you’ll have to show how it involves mainstream issues, its universal concerns. These include life and death, war and peace, passion for a cause, idealism and love.
What genre, that is, kind of writing, do you want to do? It can be a fiction genre or one of the many nonfiction categories. But for all of them, you have to identify your audience and your own approach, that is, your author platform.
I define an author platform as a virtual “place to stand before the crowd.” It requires recognized standing or authority in an area of expertise, and enough personal following, or celebrity, to guarantee a ready audience for your ideas, works, and indeed, for yourself.
Choose the right genre for your unique story. It can shorten your path to publication, improve distribution and make your work more discoverable in the vast sea of publishing.
About the best thing I did for my writing career was to join local writing groups. Each literary society, in its own way taught me about the large and growing publishing industry,
The motto of St. Louis Writers Guild is true for most writers’ groups: You have friends here!
Your beta readers will help you weed out any plot holes, confusing scenes, awkward dialog, and lengthy narratives that slow your story… Feedback is how best-sellers are born.
The universe of publishing is expanding rapidly. As publishers were besieged by ever more hopeful authors, the literary agent came upon the scene to screen, select and help authors prepare their manuscripts for submission to the big publishers. The spectrum of publishing includes those big houses, good small presses, predatory vanity presses, and most recently, quality self-publishing. We’ll share some insights and expert advice on safe navigation of this complex world.
When as a new writer you receive a copy your first published book, like your first child, it is a joy to behold. It also signals a change in your life and an important milestone in your writing career. Most important, it’s a challenge to move on with the next phase of the work. But what should the next steps be?
Pub 6.0: Publicity: Traditional, with the big bucks, or new age, on the internet
Pub 7.0: Social networking: the new wave
Pub 8.0 Marketing: media types: Print, e-books, Kindle, audiobooks
Pub 9.0: Sales and distribution channels: exclusive vs. the Omnium Gatherum approach
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