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Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Writing Tip: Finish Your Manuscript so You Can Go on School Visits

Stuck on your manuscript? Read this pep talk from Neil Gaiman. And then, get your butt in the chair and write.

1. Join SCBWI, if you haven't already.
2. Dare to bare and join a critique group.
3. Massage your work and revise.
4. Read, Read, Read.
5. Research literary agents and publishers.
6. Lather up interest in your work. Write a good query letter. There are so many ideas of what works, use a model query you like best.
7. Rinse. Proofread and send your work out.
8. All the gunk not out? Massage, Lather up and Rinse again. Try a different approach. Revise work and query letter. Proofread.
9. Repeat sending your work out until you reach success.

You're gonna want to do this, because when your book is published, you'll be able to use BookMoot's great advice on School Visits, and see your book through your readers' eyes. How cool is that?

Any other suggestions?

8 comments:

Christine M said...

Great tips. I should probably join SCBWI - that's something I haven't done yet

Patty P said...

Man, you are motivation central. Lately, I've been in my slacker mode...focused on everything but writing. I've been told it will pass! Thanks for the post!

PJ Hoover said...

Yes, join!!!

I'm somewhere ont his list bouncing around between 5 and 9. How about a number 10? Have fun!

Thanks for the great post!

HipWriterMama said...

Tricia-
#10. Have fun! Definitely need this one.
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Patty,
I figure if I can keep positive, it has got to follow through into my writing. Right?
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Chris,
Yes. I echo Tricia. Join SCBWI. You'll have access to helpful information.

daphne grab said...

hm, i would also add to be very open to getting critique when it comes your way. writing groups are great for this and also some editors will turn down your work and tell you exactly why. it can really hurt to get but try to remember that someone thought enough of your work to try and help you improve it- and do what you can to let them help!

HipWriterMama said...

Daphne,
I'm so glad you mentioned this. You're right, it is very important to be open to critique on your work. Thanks for this great advice.

MotherReader said...

Wonderful tips. What do you do if your book is still stuck in your gut? (See Speed Bump cartoon)

Cloudscome said...

You are the second person in two days to tell me to join SCBWI. Hmmmm.

Thanks very much for that link to the pep talk by Neil Gaiman. I am saving that one to reread frequently.

It reminds me of how, when I am making a quilt, there is always the time that comes when I start thinking the whole thing is incredibly ugly. I want to rip it up and throw it away and start something new. If I resist that urge and keep working it turns beautiful again at the next stage.

It also reminds me of the labor of giving birth. There is that time called "transition" when the mother thinks she will give up and go home. Can't do it, doesn't want a baby anymore, wants to give up. They told me in birthing class that that would come and what it means is that you are in transition, you are fully dilated and the baby is about to come out. Time to start breathing and pushing!