Do you know the question asked more often by more self-publishers than any other? “What do I do now?”
We even have battle-tested books that describe in detail the route to publication, like The Self-Publishing Manual, The Self-Publishing Boot Camp Workbook, The Step-by-Step Guide to Self-Publishing for Profit and the upcoming new edition of The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing.
I decided when I had Matt Chevy redesign the blog to add some categories on the left sidebar under the “Start Here” heading to address this specific question. Each is intended to be a short introductory statement about the subject areas self-publishers go through while getting their books to print. Then there are relevant links from the archives of The Book Designer.
As of today I’ve published almost 300 posts here, and it can be challenging to find the information you’re looking for. That’s where the “Start Here” categories come in.
I’m about half finished with these pages, so I thought I would show you what I’ve been doing behind the scenes. Here’s the first in the series, Authentic Writing. I hope you find something in these articles to enjoy and profit from.
Self-publishers start out as writers, then become authors. Some people are natural writers, but the rest of us need help from time to time.
One of the best ways to connect with readers is when your writing is authentic, material that comes right out of your own experience. Although many of these resources are aimed at nonfiction writers, fiction writers need authenticity too.
It seems to me that as writers, we need to learn to draw on our deepest resources, the essential traits that define us. Writing is a creative expression that allows each of us to communicate from our unique vantage point our own view of the world. Whether we’re describing a scene from memory, the details of a scene in a historical romance, or explaining the way geology has formed the landscape, we need the skill to trust our own instincts and write our truth.
When writing is authentic, regardless of its subject matter, it communicates to the reader and draws them into the world the writer has to show them.
Although many of the articles on the blog relate more directly to books and publishing, I try to remember that it’s in the creative act that all our publishing begins. I hope you enjoy these articles.
The community at The Book Designer is an active and engaged one, so I hope you’ll participate by leaving a comment to expand, to reflect on, or to contest what you’ve read. Enjoy!
Writing Technique and Inspiration
Unleash Your Creativity Now: How to Freewrite
How to Get Out of Your Own Way: Suzanne Murray on Freewriting
Creativity—The List of Lists
How Freewriting Saved My Life
Writing for your Life: Old Friend from Far Away by Natalie Goldberg
Writing For Your Life by Deena Metzger
Book Review: If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland
The next stop on your publishing journey is Getting Ready to Publish. When you’re ready, continue on.