Naturally, the first step in becoming a published author is to write. This involves not only
getting your ideas down on paper or in the computer but also shaping it so that it communicates your story effectively to your
intended audience. I focus on writing fiction; to get anywhere with fiction, you must have a completed novel before you begin
to query an agent or publisher. If you do not have a polished, finished novel, check out the links in the “Writing the Novel”
box to glean some guidelines from my experiences.
Once your novel is completed and polished, you have a few options. I will mention two:
querying an agent to represent you; or querying a publisher directly. I have selected to start with an agent, but I have
learned a few things about writing directly to the publisher as well. Personally, I find this to be a very exciting step
because you begin to build up a team who will support you, if all goes well. If you are ready to start building this team,
go to the “Finding Your Support” links.
The last set of links, “Getting Your Book to the Consumer,” describes the lengthy process most
authors must follow to get their work on the shelf of the bookstores. A lot can be done by the author along the way, but work
with your support team. Realize that it takes, on average, two years for a novel to progress from the initial acceptance of
the manuscript by the publisher to a finished product on the shelf of a bookstore. Practice patience, and start work on your
next novel during this time.
Feel free to ask me any questions about the process I am in. Just use the e-mail below.