I read offerings on social media from authors, or potential authors, who worry if what they write is good enough or if anybody will like it. They ask questions. What if I have negative reviews? Do I need more writing lessons? It seems to me that more time is spent on self-doubt than actual writing. They are making it all too difficult when it should be fun. I’m not qualified to judge anyone and my only intent is to offer observations.
Until 18 months ago, I had never written anything except a report at school, which got me a C. I am not an author nor am I a writer. I am a storyteller. I write as if I am relating an event in your living room. The result is, in the past 18 months, I have written and published five books. A two-part autobiography and three novels.
If you have a story in your head, start writing. Don’t worry about anything but getting the story down. Write what comes into your head. Let the story out in your words. Understand the characters and speak as they would, slang, bad English, etc. After a couple of hours walk away and think about what happens next.
The next day read yesterday’s work, make changes and corrections if needed. Then continue. It’s much easier for the story to come out when you have no hang-ups about how good it is, or if someone will like it. Personally, I never do outlines, drafts or think of a rewrite. I let the story lead me without being entirely sure of where it is going or how it ends.
Telling the story is the easiest part, the business side takes more time to learn. That is for another day.
Listen to what readers say and learn without taking the negatives personally. Keep in mind that writing books costs you money, you write for your own personal reasons and satisfaction, and remember if your book is read and enjoyed by only one person, you are a success.
Thanks to Jack Kregas for this guest post. He is a featured author participating in Mystery Thriller Week and his books will be available throughout the event. He has agreed to share his post as a source of encouragement to new writers and to fans that have a small grain of an idea inside.
Jack Kregas was born in the north-east of the United States. He is now an Australian citizen living in Brisbane, Australia. After publishing his first book in 2015, an autobiography of his adventurous life, he has written another three books and is currently working on his fifth book.