We all know that writing is a verb. Writers duh write. But in this day and age, with the opportunities that abound, writers need to do more than just huddle in our cold dark cave and labor over a raw manuscript. Shaping and reshaping until the clay becomes the mold of a great story. Writers need to not only converse with other writers, but to take charge of their careers.
With the explosion of ebooks, writers have been in some ways given their emancipation from agents, which, in itself, is a double edged sword. Agents are needed to submit work to New York publishers and in some cases e pubs, but in order to attract agents, writers need to have published work. So how do we handle this seemingly double standards?
First and foremost, writers need to be aware of opportunities. Yes, they do only knock once. While on the trail of a good agent, writers need to show they can produce work. So, it is important to know what publishers are looking for. A writer must gleam the slush pile quotes and needs from editors by keeping abreast of what the market is looking for.
How many of you make list for the grocery store? We know that going into the store without one means we often spend more money by picking up unwanted items. The same can be said for our writing. Yes, its important to write the story of your heart. But, it can also help your career to pick two to three targeted publishers both standard and E then read what their editors are searching for. Does it fall into your interest? Can you craft a synopsis or outline of a story by looking at their new lines. If so, do it, write it, send it. Choose to have your work in your hands. It is always so much better to be proactive than reactive.
Once you have submitted your idea, get on with your other writings. Yes, you'll obsess by checking your emails, wondering, marking the days to come, but who knows after 6 to 12 weeks you might get the go ahead on the project and propel your writing into new markets. Isn't that just what you wanted?
So get started by perusing epubs, making a target list, reading some of their books and throwing caution to the wind, take your pen and write. The world is your oyster, cave and all.
Happy March writing,