It’s super easy to think of writing as this magical soul-freeing journey of consuming excess amounts of caffeine and creating numerous worlds in which a writer holds the power to kill anyone at anytime.
In fact, most people probably see writers this way.
They think a writer is this spiritual creature who takes great pleasure in killing off characters and making readers cry. They think of writers as a sort of God, because the power is in their hands. But most importantly, they see writers as free. They see them as someone who has the ability to free their soul whenever they wish.
And yes, whilst all that may be true (metaphorically, of course,) there is way more to it than what meets the eye.
The art of writing as a singular entity, is perhaps the most soul-freeing journey one could ever embark upon. However, the qualms and stress and sleepless nights that come with the darker sides of writing, are the things that make writing way more difficult for a writer than it is for anyone else.
This darker side, or at least the one this article will be covering, is the pursuit of getting your creative genius in the hands of fiction-thirsty readers.
It is Time to Study
And by study, I don’t mean the boring kind that you would do for a biology test or some other equally boring academic assessment…
What I do want you to study though, is the market. And in particular, the market in which you want your book to be sold in.
If you’re a writer who is looking to publish their work, then studying the market is one of the most important things you could do. It’s all about knowing what is going on in the literary world. Once you have a keen understanding of this, it is so much easier to write a book that will have a higher chance of seeing success in said market.
So if you don’t already do this, what better time to start than now? Head to the local bookstore, buy ten books that are all published in the genre you write in, and read them. Study the content: the pacing of the narrative, the way the plot unravels and the way the characters intertwine – absorb every last detail. And then, replicate this in your work, making sure you aren’t copying of course.
Studying the market isn’t ripping off other writers’ ideas or anything like that, it’s simply assessing the playing field. In reading lots of published books from your genre, you’re learning the current direction of the market. You’re learning what sells and what works well, you’re learning how it all comes together to become a marketable book.
So my tip for today is: study. Study the market of the genre you write in, assess its current position, and then write the book that you envision becoming its future.
Hop to It
The market isn’t going to study itself you know…
It’s time to put down those excuses and pick up some work ethic. Writing your first draft is all good, but it’s what you do once that first draft is over and done with that will define your success (or lack of) as a writer.
A great book is made in the editing phase, remember that.
For now, get writing, get reading, and study your craft – just make sure you consume enough coffee to allow you to properly do so.
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