During the year I was saving money to quit my job and make the leap towards becoming an author, I did a lot of research. I read articles upon articles, endless blog posts, and I got in touch with some of my favorite authors and asked them for advice. Overall, I tried to be as informed about the industry and the process as I could be.
For example, I knew that I wanted to have my book professionally edited. Mainly because, as a reader, I knew how frustrating it was to be knocked out of the story due to bad spelling and grammar, and I didn’t want that experience for my own readers.
Having someone do a professional cover for me was also a planned expense in my budget. Granted, the saying is, “You shouldn’t buy a book by it’s cover,” but I’m honest enough to admit that if the cover is super cheesy or low-quality, I have been known to pass on buying it.
However, despite trying to prepare myself for this process, I can honestly say – I. had. no. idea.
- No idea that it would take me six weeks of writing before finally coming to the conclusion I needed to plot my book.
- No idea that it would then take me an additional two weeks to research HOW to plot a book, and another four weeks to actually do it.
- No idea that I would struggle to find a streamlined workflow process that would allow my work to be easily formatted and seamlessly sync over multiple devices.
- No idea that it would take me four weeks of trying to think up a title (and I STILL haven’t fully committed to it.)
- No idea that it would be so difficult to write the back cover book blurb.
My goodness! What a ride so far! And, I haven’t even gotten to half of them; like formatting, uploading to various sites, and marketing…
Really, when I think about it, some of these things shouldn’t have come as a surprise. I mean, I read. I’ve gone to bookstores and picked up countless books and read their back covers. Those three or four paragraphs are crucial towards convincing a potential reader into becoming an actual reader. However, trying to boil your whole book of 120,000 words into a 300 word blurb is really hard!
Now, don’t get me wrong, none of these experiences have been bad, per se. I’ve kind of taken this whole year and any setbacks as what they are…a learning opportunity. Hopefully, with my next book, the whole process will be much easier since I’ve taken the time to break the trail this year.
Hey, one can hope, right?