Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Advice from a Published Writer

Sarah Webb proved an interesting, enthusiastic, friendly, speaker in Bailieborough last evening. She spoke about her own writing habits and history and gave advice, most of it common knowledge but worth hearing again:

Read plenty especially in the field you hope to publish in. Write if you have something to say. Write from the heart.

Be prepared to take criticism and rejection. Be optimistic as regards getting published - keep trying. She mentioned a friend who has written fifteen books without any having been published who finally appears to have found a publisher. If your work is good enough it will eventually be published.

She spoke at length about rewriting, redrafting, editing one's work and showed examples of manuscripts of hers with editors' comments. She writes what she called a "shitty" first draft and then is prepared to do a number of drafts until she is happy with it. She then makes the changes suggested by her editors at each subsequent stage of the process.

She writes four books per year and her weekly target is 8,000 words. She has written 27 books, 23 of which have been published. she is working on numbers 28 and 29 at the moment.

Her website is here and she blogs here.

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