Guest Post by Kevin T. Johns, author of The Page Turners
The debut episode of Mistakes Rookie Authors Make, a weekly short-video series featuring writing tips for first-time authors, premiered online last Monday.
The series is hosted by yours truly.
Unless you’ve already purchased my novel, The Page Turners, you probably have no idea who I am, and you’re probably asking yourself, “Just what qualifies this Kevin T. Johns guy to host a web series about mistakes rookie authors make in the drafting of their manuscripts?
Well, the answer is simple, my friends.
I’m qualified to talk about the mistake authors make because… I’ve made them all myself!
Too long a book, too many character, a mish-mash of genres, not backing up my master copy, having no B plot, forcing rough drafts on friends and family, letting technology stand in my way, allowing myself to get distracted by other projects, giving in to apathy and laziness and self-doubt and fear – I’ve done it all folks!
Writing a novel is not an easy task, your high school education probably didn’t equip you with the skill-set required to write a novel. Heck, I have a master’s degree in English Literature, and it still took me eight years to craft The Page Turners.
Amongst the myriad of missteps I made along the way to publication, I think the largest was not seeking support, advice, and training from those who had been there before me, and already walked the path I was blindly stumbling my way down.
Your average person doesn’t dive into advanced physics and expect to excel without the support of a teacher, and yet so many of us approach novel writing in just that manner
We have this image of “the artist” in our society as this loner individual, existing on the periphery of society, capturing the metaphysical energies of the muse, and translating that power down onto the canvass or the written page.
But that isn’t how it really works.
There is nothing metaphysical about writing a novel. Like everything else in life, what it takes to write and publish a book is hard work, perseverance, an adequate knowledge-base, and an appropriately developed skill-set.
I encourage any aspiring or struggling authors reading this to check out Mistakes Rookie Authors Make and sign-up for the mailing list to get a new episode sent their way every week, but if I could give them one piece of advice right now, it is this: Don’t go it alone, and don’t sit around waiting for the muse to visit you (she tends to be an often tardy mistress).
Seek out the supports you need. The internet in an absolute wealth of knowledge. Get help from veterans, experts, coaches and mentors. Take training and attend workshops. And, most important of all, put in the hard work necessary.
There is nothing magical about the process involved in writing a novel. But, if you are lucky, that end product, the book itself, just might work some magic for your readers.
Kevin Johns is the author of The Page Turners, and host of Mistakes Rookie Authors Make, a weekly short-video series featuring writing tips for first-time novelists. Just visit http://yournovelblueprint.com to watch the latest episode and join the mailing list to get a new episode in your in-box every Monday!