Want my autograph? Why, you ask? Didn’t you know? I Indie-published 8 novels and 2 novellas. That’s why. Not impressed? I contracted a book, and it has been published! Exciting news to me. Still not impressed? I was a guest Monday night at blog radio (http://www.blogtalkradio.com/hummingbirdplace) and am now a radio celeb. Well, you can’t have my autograph anyway, and one day it will be worth something.
In case you didn’t catch on, I’m messing with you! I think each person who completes a book deserves a gold star, and revising one earns an extra gold star. Each person who has submitted a book to an editor or an agent deserves more points, of course. (Have a handful of stars.)
If you took time to polish a book and Indie publish it, you deserve a medal. (We’re past the gold stars now.) Seriously, it takes guts/courage to do that. I’m not bragging or complaining, but the formatting part caused me pain and whining. I am not computer competent. BUT I did it 10 times.
In 1991 I started writing my first novel and some family memories as short stories. Since then I have taken courses, attended workshops, read books and magazine articles, entered contests, and submitted my manuscripts. Despite “good” rejections, no one wanted to buy my books. I really wanted to sell and get an advance and lovely royalties. That didn’t happen. One editor I respect and love for her writing suggested I self-publish a book she had to reject. I considered it, but still held out hope for that sale, even to a small publisher, even to an e-publisher. (So much for the New York Times Best Selling list and long lines in bookstores.) No one wanted that book or my others.
Finally I bit the bullet and uploaded one novel and then another and become an editor for a new small press.(Gilded Dragonfly Books) Finally an editor wanted my first novel. I had revised it and polished it and he wanted me to polish more. Because I didn’t give up or cling to old dreams, I found a new one. I have a romantic suspense novel published as an erotic romance. (Who knew?)
Finish the novels you begin, even if the stories and characters change and toss roadblocks in your way.
Revise and polish over and over again.
Listen to critique partners and beta readers, but remember the book is YOUR book!
Submit the book until you don’t have any options left.
If you decide to publish the book yourself, get it edited by someone who knows about story development and someone who knows grammar rules. Just because you think someone knows good grammar and punctuation doesn’t mean it is true.
Don’t give up on your dreams, but be willing to adjust them.
Try new things, like I did the radio interview.
Mary Marvella is a retired school teacher turned writer. She tutors and edits and writes, and that’s about all she does.
Twitter Mary Marvella@mmarvellab
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Wow! This is awesome stuff! Ten published novels, that’s crazy. Wishing you ten more to come. Thanks for being an inspiration, Mary 🙂
Thanks, Stuart! I have been at this since 1991. I studied a lot and devoured Writers Digest magazines! I have taken workshops and classes. I teach them now and coach writers and edit freelance. You just must NOT give up!