I firmly believe that if you work hard enough to achieve something it will happen – even if it costs you blood, sweat and tears in the process. Despite this belief, from time to time I need an injection of inspiration from people who’ve been there, done it and got the T shirt (or the book deal).
As an aspiring writer, I asked a couple of the successful published authors I admire if they’d be kind enough to share some tips. Thankfully, they said yes! Here’s who they are and what they said.
Rachael is the author of seven Mills & Boon Modern romances, securing her first book deal in 2013 having been shortlisted in a competition run by the publisher. Her titles include A Deal Before the Altar, Craving Her Enemy’s Touch and From One Night To Wife.
Rachael’s tips for aspiring writers:
- Believe in yourself and take your writing seriously.
- Write regularly. That doesn’t have to be every day, it could be once a week, do whatever suits your lifestyle and stick to it.
- Enjoy what you write. If you don’t, a reader is never going to.
- Never give up. You just don’t know what is around the next corner.
Following many years working as a university lecturer, Eileen has forged a successful career in writing mystery crime novels. She is the author of four works of fiction – Blackmail for Beginners, Miss McGuire is Missing, Sins of the Past and We’ll be Watching You.
Eileen’s tips for wannabe writers:
- Ensure your book is finished and polished to the best of your ability before sending it to an agent or publisher.
- Your first page is all important; to make it stand out above the hundreds of submissions that editor and agent receive every week, I would suggest you make the first sentence / page either intriguing, humorous or outrageous.This is known as the hook. Of course it must fit with your story. You only have about 90 seconds to catch the editor’s eye and make them want to read on.Imagine this – you are in a bookshop and want to buy a book. What would be the first thing you would do? Having found a book you liked the look of you would look at the blurb then read the first page.
Don’t make the mistake of telling the editor they will love the book once they get into it – they need to love it from the first page.
A big thank you to Rachael and Eileen for sharing their wisdom, and I hope you can draw inspiration from these wise words whenever you might need a bit of a boost!