What Writing a Book Has Taught Me

Writing a Book

When I sat down last year to plan Elementals of Nordica, I was not content with just writing a book for pleasure. I wanted to go far beyond that and give the readers what they want, while simultaneously enjoying the writing and editing process to where I looked forward to going to work each day.

Here I am, about 13 months later, and the writing and editing process for Wind Wielder is reaching its closing stages. Not that I won’t return to the work and provide an updated manuscript annually and eventually, bi- or tri-annually; but just writing a book and doing everything on my own has really unleashed my strengths and weaknesses.

Today’s post will describe much of what came easy, and even more of what took far more time than I believed in the writing of Wind Wielder.

Ready to embark on a fun, reminiscing tour?

Keep reading.

 

More than Just Writing a Book

Anyone can write a book. Just write between 50,000 and 100,000 (or more) words, upload the manuscript to Amazon, and watch those royalties flow in, right?

Not right.

But the former is true. Anyone can write a book; such as a first draft and claim they’ve written a book. Okay, bravo. Others, not so much, as we realize that writing a book is nothing more than just that – the first draft. The rough draft, and boy is it rough.

Would I show you or any other reader my first draft of Wind Wielder?

Not a chance. The first draft of any book is full of plot issues, inconsistencies in dialogue, tone, and sometimes, point-of-view and even character names. Especially since I love to write by the seat of my pants and change things.

So, what are a few things in Wind Wielder that made me say, “No, this is stupid, erase it and rewrite?”

Let’s see, so the first thrashball game was full of melodrama from fan violence. Which of course, led to the story taking a completely different course of action. I think I deleted entire chapters and rewrote them.

Another plot element I deleted involved the evolution of another character. I nixed it and given the reader magnets I’ve been able to create from such a deletion, it could not have worked out better.

I read plenty of bestselling books along the way, and really got an idea of what readers expect in works that include epic fantasy tropes – even in a genre-bending world. That said, I totally revamped the ending.

Related: Why It’s Necessary to Proofread Novels Multiple Times

 

My Biggest Challenges

Definitely developmental editing and I easily could have outsourced it. However, I still don’t have the budget to drop $2,000 to $2,500 on a top-notch developmental editor. Yeah, cheaper ones are out there, but given all the books I’ve read, I wasn’t impressed with the results, despite solid stories. That said, I did all the developmental editing for this one.

And it was a process since even when I moved to copyedit, I still found a lot of holes in the plot, plus character development inconsistencies. If Wind Wielder earns me some solid income, odds are I’ll use a portion of it to invest in developmental editing, because I will not miss it. Although if you’ve read some of my previous posts, I’m still leery about hiring an editor since no one knows an author’s work better than the authors, themselves.

However, I’m still open to sending future works to a pro because it’ll free up much more time for writing.

I’m a decent copyeditor, which is something I’ve known for a while given previous experience with copyediting, or ferocious self-editing courses. However, as with developmental editing, it’s still more than a process. And again, it takes quite a few read-throughs to catch spots that I can tighten and improve.

Related: When You Think the Editing Process is Over…

 

The Biggest Challenge?

Checking the pride at the door, as they say in the gym world, which I frequent daily between writing and editing bouts. But when it comes to my works, the biggest challenge is to ensure that potential readers and those who become fans will love each of my works.

Therefore, it’s not about writing for myself, it’s about writing for you. Even if it means nixing things that made me laugh, or had a hidden meaning.

So by asking myself, “What would my readers expect?” has completely changed the scope of what you will find in Wind Wielder if you read it, and subsequent novels in Elementals of Nordica.

I’d say the only element I kept for myself has to do with the genre-bending; but since Carissa Andrews’ Pendomus Chronicles did so well featuring some epic fantasy tropes amidst a science fiction realm, then I guess it’s something readers also expect. So if you love genre-bending, you’re getting a lot of it here.

When it comes to writing a book, the biggest thing I’ve learned is that it’s all about you, the reader. Or, if you’re an author or aspiring author reading today’s post, it’s always the reader first. So before you write or edit, check your pride at the door, and write with your readers in mind.

Related: TC Marti’s Rookie Mistakes: Episode I

 

What Will You Expect in Wind Wielder?

Is Wind Wielder, the Elementals of Nordica Series, and the Elementals Universe right for you?

If you love epic fantasy magical systems, including elemental magic, deep and complex plots, sword and sorcery, and epic fantasy tropes, you’ll love Elementals of Nordica. However, it is not Old World epic fantasy. So again, if genre-bending is your thing, you got a few solid books to read because the fun doesn’t end when Elementals of Nordica ends.

Yes, the Elementals Universe will comprise at least five different series, with at least one in each of the Five Worlds. But hey, what’s not to say I write ten series? Especially if I come up with new characters and stories that you are willing to read, then ten is a realistic number. Just think of that backlist of books!

Anyway, if you’d like to see if Elementals of Nordica is for you, or simply my writing style, then join the Readers Republic today. Here, you will get one freebie upon joining, called Chronicles of the Elementals, which serves as a prequel to Wind Wielder. You will get a second work three days later called the Chronicles of Rondure, the prequel to Book II, Wind Master.

Related: Elementals of Nordica