I began writing my first manuscript almost five years ago. And, like so many new writers, didn't know a thing other than I had a story inside me that I had to tell. Formatting a manuscript? Uh, what's that? POV, HEA, TSTL and SDT were as much a mystery to me as why my dog has to circle three times before she lies down. I was clueless.
But then, once I finished that first manuscript and began submitting, yes, my eyes were opened -- wide. Sometimes they were filled with tears too - but that's all part of the learning process.
One thing I've learned above all others is how incredibly generous other romance authors are --published and non-published. Giving of their time, talent, experience, wisdom...you name it, they give it.
I've learned an incredible amount in the last five years, but still have so much to learn. It's nice to know that there are so many out there who are willing to help me on my journey.
I discovered years ago, even before I started to write, you can learn from anyone at any stage. I've learned from multi-published NYT bestselling authors and I've learned from authors who have been writing a few months.
No, there's no quick and easy path to publishing. If there were, what would be the fun and challenge in that? One of the best things about this business is the learning and growing and yes Carla, those amazing epiphanies.
The advice I've received along the way has kept me going, kept me motivated and kept me sane -- well, almost.
And the best advice I've received? Oh my, that's hard to say. But, if I had to choose one, it'd be a simple one. Unfortunately I can't give credit to one particular person, since I've heard this from so many. And that advice? Just write the damned book. Stop staring at a blank screen, worrying whether the story is right for today's market, what will my family and friends think, etc. Stop worrying, stop procrastinating and stop making excuses. Write the damned book!
What about you? What's the best advice you've received? What advice would you give others -- newbies and multipublished authors. What's the single number one truth that keeps you going, keeps those creative juices flowing, refusing to let you give up?
Come on, share! I could use some more advice!