There are a lot of people that decides to become a writer with the philosophy that an artist must pours his soul into a piece of paper and does not pay a lot of attention to the commercial aspects of writing. There is some truth in this, as, in the end, writing a novel is a creative act and the ability to transmit our essence to the pages is what will make it honest and enhance its literary quality.
However, writing fiction is a business; writers create stories for readers to read, and there are all sorts of intermediaries between the writer and the reader, which encompass the publishing industry: agents, editors, publishers, distributors, book-sellers, etc.
In order to be successful in the literary fiction market you need to be a part of this industry, and even when creating a product that readers want to read depends on your artistic side, getting it known within the editorial market directly concerns with your professional approach.
This means to be organized and efficient in your writing routines (delivery of the product needs to be guaranteed). You also need to be responsible and pay attention in your meetings with agents and publishers, setting aside your creative side to make room for the business side.
This does not mean to “sell yourself to marketing”, but to establish a basis of responsibility as a professional that will encourage others to invest in your project and will keep your writing career spinning, feeding of money and respect. This is the job we have chosen.
The background also helps, that is why we need to have the tools to become a professional writer at hand. It is impossible to think of a carpenter without a hammer; that would give a clear impression of what kind of professional he is.
Managing our time also leads us to become professional.
Give it some time:
As we know, becoming a writer takes time. You cannot reach the objective with less time that it takes to walk the path; there are no shortcuts. That is why it is good to focus as experienced workers do, in small tasks, one at a time, doing them in the best possible way, without worrying how long they will take. This is the best way to make the process faster.
This refers to making the best of your writing sessions. By applying writing techniques, overcoming blockings, applying to detail resolution, you will unintentionally reach the goal in less time while enjoying the ride. You need to write intelligently.
Becoming a writer requires creativity.
It is time to discuss the third aspect (perhaps the most important one) that will help us sustain as writers: creativity.
The good news is that we all have some creativity and, if we take this as a basis, that creativity can be developed, amplified, strengthen, with different exercises, generating a constant flow of ideas to which professionalism will need to give form, without letting motivation fade, during the whole process.
The creativity we all have when we are children, that one which allows us to spend hours with a group of trees turned into an enchanted forest, or on some cardboard boxes that are to be our spaceship, grows rigid, and we tend to lose it while growing up, due to the false believe that it goes against seriousness and responsibility. This is false. You can be responsible and creative at the same time!
If you want to become a successful novel writer, it is key to learn to make the most of your creativity. Creativity will not only allow you to write much better, but it will also help you enjoy the writing process.
Inspiration, our writing muse, is derived from creativity, from that right hemisphere of our brain where imagination and emotions reside. Nevertheless, it is not possible to wait sitting for our muse to come to us, we need to wake it and call it.
Picasso said “I do not believe in muses, but in case they come down, I would rather they find me working”; and there are many creativity exercises that can be useful at different times.
A great grey cloud in our creative sky is the dreaded “writers blocking”. Do not be scared, there are many ways to overcome it and get on with our task until we complete our novel.
Now stop for a while and take the necessary time to absorb all the advice on this article. I know you are anxious to embark on this new adventure to become a writer, but you need to understand that writing is a career by itself, not a sprint.
Taking the time to get ready before starting, can save you a lot of time later.