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Becoming an Author

They say getting a book published on your first try is as likely as winning the lottery. This is true. The book industry is one of the most competitive industries out there. Publishers are flooded with thousands of manuscripts and query letters each month, so if you’re serious about publishing, you really have to set yourself apart. Like the lottery, there is some luck involved in publishing. But it also requires education, research and natural ability.


Education

Take as many writing courses in high school and college as you can. Choose a college or university that offers a great creative writing program. The education and advice from your teachers and peers is invaluable.


Research

You can't just get an idea and write a story. You have to research the market. Before you even begin writing, you must READ a ton of books in the genre you plan to write. Reading is the ultimate research. You also need to know what types of manuscripts each agent and publisher is looking for because not all publishers accept every genre. Your best bet is to read The Writer’s Market—an annual publication that lists publisher guidelines, agents, industry trends and so much more. The Writer’s Market is like the bible for writers.


A Finished Manuscript

Once your book is finished, get feedback from your friends and family. And most of all, take their criticism. The only way to improve your book is to find the negatives and turn them into positives. That’s what editing is all about.


Paycheck

An author’s income is unpredictable. Some authors will get royalties (a percentage of every book sold), and others will get an advance against royalties (a sum on money up front). Typically, first-time authors make between $0.00 to $40,000 for their first novel, most averaging around $6,000.


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  • 29 Comments

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    Who's Your Fave Spooky Author?

    • R.L. Stine.
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    • Christopher Pike.
    • Vivian Vande Velde.

    Dear Dish-It In The Forums

    JazzyRox
    JazzyRox posted in Family Issues:
    hi! this is "blonde"! i dont really care about this post and its not that offensive to me! i am trying to care about what others think and TBH i do....untill it comes to electronics...idk why but i dont really do well without electronics. i have good habits that include waiting untill 3:00 PM to get on screens and getting chores done before i get on screens, im much more...well....social than my sister (ill just call her "Red" xD) Red. plus im only 10. i probably will get better at habits when im older. P.S wow rainbowpoptart i dont think our pics are exactly the same xD
    reply about 6 hours
    blackveilbrides15
    Always wears black so not much of a style 
    reply about 12 hours
    Kirsti
    Kirsti posted in Style:
    Your style is simply whatever you want to wear! Just wear whatever feels comfortable, or whatever you think looks good, and it is your style (: It doesn't matter if it's not entirely individual and unique, as long as it's what you feel happy wearing.
    reply about 12 hours
    Kirsti
    Kirsti posted in Family Issues:
    I love both my parents equally, but I prefer to spend time with my dad. My father works abroad so I see him a lot less than my mother, but it means that when I see him it feels more special :3 
    reply about 12 hours
    Kirsti
    Kirsti posted in Family Issues:
    To be honest, this is probably just something you have to bear. I know that sometimes relatives can be irritating, but they only visit often because they care about you and want to see you (: Unless there is a real reason you don't want them to visit - for example, if they are unkind to you - then you should just endure it.  Or you could mention it to your parents and see if they can sort it out? This is something lots of kids have to deal with, me included, and it's just part of life! You are lucky to have grandparents who care about you so much c:
    reply about 13 hours