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The Writer’s Journey From Idea to Finished Draft to Publication

1. Figure out who you are as a writer and determine the core message you want to share with readers in this particular book. 2. Create a plan, based on your free time, most creative periods, et cetera, to get words on paper. For example: To write a 300-page book in six months, you need to write 50 pages a month, which is 12 to 13 pages a week, or 2to 3 pages a day. What will you give up, or begin doing, to accomplish this?? 3. Discipline takes you the distance. Once you’ve drafted a schedule, honor it; stick to it. Accept that talking about writing isn’t actually writing. 4. Make “free writing” a regular part of your scheduled writing time. Pick out a journal or notebook for this specific purpose and spend 5 to 10 minutes each day or every few days “dumping” whatever flows through your pen. You’ll be surprised when you look back weeks later to see what gems are hidden in that unfocused material. Today’s brief exercise: ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________ _______

5. Write forward. Don’t keep reading and editing all of what you’ve already written, only enough to move you forward in the story. 6. Consider holding off on requesting critiques until you have a huge chunk of the writing complete.

7. Choose an honest critique partner - or two. Listen with your ears, not your heart. Develop thick skin. 8. Do the work. Revise. Hone your skills. Consider seeking expert help, if you can afford it. 9. Network online. Get to know published and aspiring writers online. Subscribe to blogs and listservs that focus on professional writing and feature published authors whose work you admire. This can lead to endorsements, book deals, and other support. 10. Network in person. Attend professional writing conferences to connect with editors, agents and published writers. Develop win-win relationships and master the art of keeping in touch. 11. Create a platform, based on the theme of your work. This will help you develop a marketing strategy and a brand, which are among the criteria publishers consider when choosing to publish an author’s work. 12. Don’t give up! Be tenacious and it will happen.. Explore all options. Determine whether traditional publishing, self-publishing or some combination will best fit your needs as an author. 13. Never stop honing your craft. The more you read, the better you’ll write. The better you write, the more you’ll be read. Keep writing, repeat steps 1-12, and your efforts will pay off.

Books: On Writing by Stephen King Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maas Spiritual Writing by Deborah Levine Herman On Writing Well by William Zinser Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott Techniques of the Selling Writer by Dwight Swain Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Rennie Browne and Dave King © Stacy Hawkins Adams www.stacyhawkinsadams

Writer's Journey  

Want to finish your book? Here are solid tips.

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