As an author for more years than I care to admit, the reality—from a writer’s perspective—is really more like this:
– Get a super idea for a book with the perfect hero(ine) and unique setting.
– Tell your friends/co-authors you are going to write said book. They ask you for the working title.
– You sit down and create a list with the perfect key words for your title (you do know about meta data right?).
– Take your title and go to Zon to research how often it’s been used in your particular genre. Find it 46 times and discover the latest title was a bestseller last month. Protecting your creative spirit, you look for less overused titles and keep researching. Two pages of scratched out titles later, you decide the heck with it and go back to the first title, figuring your publisher/agent will change it anyway.
– Sit down to write the book and research a lot as you go. Part of the art you thrive on is discovering everything is not smooth sailing, and your characters or research take the story in unexpected directions (ie. dead ends). You throw out a few chapters, add a new secondary character or antagonist, make some plot notes to take you to the end, and march on.
– If you are already a published author, this is where distractions will come into play. Your publisher wants revisions on the last book you submitted or has asked that you update your website, Facebook header, Twitter header, and/or blog to reflect the upcoming book. Oh, and have you submitted the necessary things for your blog tour/book signing/interview?
– During a writing break, you check on your books that you put up on retail sites after getting backlist rights reverted and creating a company to handle the process. Darn, still not enough sales to worry about having to pay quarterly taxes.
– You discover the indie books, though, have actually sold more copies than you imagined. Is a book/series ready to take off? Should you write more in that series and hold off on the next book to your agent/publisher? Can you?
– Ads…should I be doing ads to keep the momentum rolling on Facebook, Twitter, Bookbub (who won’t take your ad without a gazillion reviews), or the dozens of sites that advertise they will help market your book? Oh, yeah, about getting more reviews….
– Indecisive, so go back to writing. Critique partner calls and asks what $wag are you taking to the next convention (bookmarks, trinkets with your logo, goodies attached to business cards, cups, mugs, screen cleaners, nail files). You set out to order some and go through the process of wondering if any of it does any good. Your sales don’t seem to skyrocket after the piles of expensive items disappear into conference bags and goody rooms. Your friends claim it is helping in name recognition. Sure. Right.
– You continue the process above until the current book is done. You send it off to your agent, while guiltily thinking you should be putting it out via your indie company.
– Agent suggests you change the title and asks for revisions before she/he sends it off.
– Sigh. The cycle goes on with unexpected variations every day.
What part of the creative process do you find rewarding, or fun, or a pain in the backside?
Sandy loves the creative process with all its quirks. Her current books are action-adventure, suspense, with humor, sexy characters, and team work. She has a new book at her agents, and is managing backlist titles, in particular a historical paranormal romance series (written with her sister) which takes place in Salem, the perfect read to get ready for Halloween.