Publishing non-negotiable: Hire an editor
Have you written your first novel and wondered what now? If so, I know exactly what you’re going through.
Your family and friends have probably read your story and told you that you’ve crafted a book that will get you on the New York Times Best Seller list. I think my sister told me my writing was as good as Sandra Brown. Even in my dreams, I don’t reach that level of success.
Maybe you’ve worked with critique partners who have pointed out grammar and punctuation mistakes, questioned the relevance of some of your scenes, or slapped your hand for head–hopping.
How many times have you heard, “You can’t break the rules?” I’ll let you in on a little secret: Those rules are only guidelines. They are not edicts carved in stone. But, before you can start breaking them, you need to know what they are and how breaking them impacts your story.
Here’s my favorite rule: Try to leave out the part readers will skip.
I wish I knew what that was. I had a reader tell me the other day that she read every word in a story, even the descriptions. I think she’s a rare breed.
While writing The Ruby Brooch, I head–hopped with the best of them, rarely got into a deep point of view, and wrote thousands of words of back story. I meandered. I introduced unnecessary characters and I wrote paragraphs full of descriptions that were boring and didn’t move the story forward. What I learned along the way was that if the story wasn’t moving forward, the reader gets bored and puts down your book. If the reader does that, he/she won’t recommend your book to a friend or write a review. You might have made a sale, but you lost the next one.
What can you do to prevent a reader from putting down your book?
Hire a professional editor. This is not an option.
If you missed my writing & marketing tweets and retweets yesterday, here they are again:
- One non–negotiable when writing your book? Hiring an editor @teammegaphone http://ow.ly/jrERs
- 6 Things Readers Want from Your Author Website http://ow.ly/jrHt6
- How To Make Your Book Discoverable http://ow.ly/jqlH1
- What Are Plot Holes and Why Should You Avoid Them http://ow.ly/jqKTQ via @Write_practice
- Social Influencers: Digital Marketers’ Most Misused Resource [INFOGRAPHIC] http://ow.ly/jrGpf
- The Art of Using Literary Devices and Techniques http://ow.ly/jrGB6 via Fiction Notes
- Agent-Assisted Self-Publishing and the Amazon White Glove Program http://ow.ly/jrGHD
- Joanna Penn on Self-Publishing and Hybrid Authors http://ow.ly/jrHXp
- Five Blogging Tips for Indie Authors http://ow.ly/jrKYZ via How to Successfully Self-Publisher
- Tips for Writing and Working Full-Time http://ow.ly/jrMIa via @WriterUnboxed
- 21 Social Media & Content Marketing Tips Tailored For Small Businesses http://ow.ly/jrNbJ via @HeidiCohen
- 6 Effective Ways to Build Relationships and Expand Your Network http://t.co/sLEOVy4Lo4 RT @evelyn_puerto
- Why the Reader Is Your Co-Writer http://ow.ly/jrNnD @KMWeiland
- Discipline and the Writer’s Life @KarenMRider http://ow.ly/jrO5o
- How to Set Up a Facebook Page for Business http://ow.ly/jrOat @smexaminer
- Writers, Are You Wasting Your Time Submitting to Agents? http://ow.ly/jrOnS @LindsayBuroker
- 3 Tips for Developing Enthralling Characters http://ow.ly/jrOTp via @JodyHedlund
- 18 Links to Writing & Marketing Blog Posts http://ow.ly/jsyyE
I’m always looking for great content to share. If you have a writing and/or marketing blog, or have a favorite that you visit often, please leave a link in the comment section. Thanks for stopping by.
Happy writing & running, Kathy
Check out these links to writing & marketing blog posts. Click to Tweet.