I have a weakness for list posts. Particularly because I still haven't figured out what my perfect, amazing post idea was last week. So guess what that means...
Five Things I've learned since I wrote A Lady of Fortune.
1) Just Keep Swimming.
Write. Just write. I started A Lady of Fortune, and then I started it. And then I started it again. I rewrote the first five chapters over and over again for nearly three years. Not consistently, sure. I worked on it at times, and then I didn't work on it. I started it in 2001, and I finished the first draft in December of 2004. I've never taken that long to finish the first draft of a book. Hopefully it will not take me that long again.
2) Beware the Dragons.
We talked about this last week. This is my second biggest learning curve, as a writer. The best way you'll learn to get better is to pay attention to what you're doing wrong and fix it.
3) Competition is Not A Thing.
I mean it is. Cause, you know, there are only so many people in the world spending money on books. But let's be real here for a second. In the massive, karmic circle of the universe there are two ways this works. Either A) you spend your life all defensive and trying to carve out your niche as a writer and you get a reputation for that--with your street team--or B) you let it go, and you make friends and help other fledgeling writers and swallow your negative comments and maybe it doesn't make your more money than the other option but crap it sounds more pleasant.
4) Don't Stress!
Sometimes I go...ages where I don't write a thing. And I'm not one of those writers who starts panicking about how I'm never going to write anything again. It's not gonna happen, I'll come up with something eventually. When it happens, after fourteen years of this, I've learned not to freak out about it. Let the dry times happen, let them give you charge to do something else. Pick up a new hobby, or read a book you've been thinking about, or learn to cook something fun.
5) Learn From Others.
There's a really fine line here, between learning and Schadenfreude. Because there's "This thing happened and this is how badly it went and I should totes not do that." And then there's "Hahaha did you see what so and so did? OMG." And I think probably everybody is guilty of a certain level of Schadenfreude, that's why there's a word for it, but it's probably healthier for everyone if we try and keep that to a minimum.
So that's what I've got, fourteen years after I plotted my first book. You're welcome.
Come back Friday, and we'll talk about...um...um...Valentine's is this weekend so I guess we'll talk about the science of love?