The “I hate my novel” disaster happens more often than you’d believe. Although it’s a horrible feeling, it’s not the end of the world. You’ve lost your inspiration, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t return. It may do. You may get a flash of insight, and complete the rest of the novel easily.
Where are you in the novel? Most writers hit a wall about three or four chapters in. Grit your teeth, and write. Write anything. Your inspiration will return.
Big tip: readers read genre fiction because they love certain kinds of books. They choose what they want to read according to genre, because their favorite genres appeal to them.
If you can write in hot-selling genres, you’ll sell BIG.
Over the past couple of years of working with fiction writers, I’ve come to understand that mostly, genre fiction is a mystery to them. It’s the big reason they don’t sell their fiction. So finally I created a program to help them, and you, to understand genre — and sell more.
Write and Sell Commercial Fiction FAST: Bestselling Kindle Genre Fiction Cheat Sheets PDF, 68 pages Fiction outsells nonfiction 6 to 1 on the Kindle Store. The hottest selling fiction of all — 69% of the 50,000 bestselling books on Amazon — is genre fiction.
In this program, you’ll discover everything you need to know about genre fiction, so that you can join the top-selling authors on Amazon.
Pay special attention to GENRE. When readers look for entertainment, they’re looking for a certain type of story. When you pick a hot genre, you’re giving readers what they want — that’s the essence of marketing.
Your character has a problem – by the end of the story, the problem’s been solved. Your character’s goal, and the obstacles to achieving it, comprise the plot of your story.
The great writer and critic E.M. Forster gave this popular example of a story and a plot:
The king died and then the queen died (story).
The king died and then the queen died of grief (plot).
If your main character has no problem, you can end up writing a vignette. Generally speaking, these aren’t satisfying to your reader. You’re aiming for a short story, with a beginning, middle, and ending.
Characters who sigh a lot are a hassle too. Just this morning, I realized that the main character in one of my current novels in progress is the Queen of the Dramatic Sigh. That’s OK, I’ll stop her sighing from now on, and will fix the problem while I’m editing.
Generally speaking, when your fictional characters get nods, wondering eyes, sighs, and other twitches, you can fix it by focusing on their emotions.
When I published this post, Indie Publishing: When You Publish And No One Cares, I got several messages from authors whose point was that it was better to opt for traditional publication rather than self-publish, because “the publisher does all that stuff.” By “stuff” they meant everything, not just book promotion.
I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. I did neither. I simply replied: “You may be right.”
Judging by my writing students, sourcing Kindle ebook covers cause more angst that writing a book does. Yes, covers are important. However, you can create them yourself very easily. Perhaps you’ve heard of Canva, the graphics editor? It’s also the easiest ever Kindle ebook cover creator.
1. Develop a “baby steps” mindset: do one thing at a time
Mindfulness is all the rage these days. You don’t have to practice meditation to get the gist of mindfulness — although meditating couldn’t hurt. Basically, mindfulness is just common sense: it’s focused concentration. You stay focused on what you’re doing at this precise moment, and nothing else. When you do that, your fears can’t overwhelm you.
Is it a challenge? Yes, and no. Yes, because we live in a crazy culture and aren’t used to paying attention to just one thing. And no, because when you’re distracted — and you will be distracted — you simply bring your attention back to what you’re concentrating on.
Relax, and sell: step by step, whether you're a newbie, or a pro
In Your Creative Business: Coaching to Turn Your Creativity into Profits, we start where you are.
* If you're already selling on Amazon, or elsewhere, we put the pieces into place which will help you to develop a tribe of enthusiastic fans of your writing. We look at ebook launches, and how to make sure that you sell as soon as you upload a new ebook.
1. Kindle books are focused, and SHORT: focus when you write
Before Amazon launched Kindle, markets for short stories were pretty much non-existent. Kindle readers changed that. Today, if you write fiction, and aren’t writing short stories, you’re missing a good market.
You can reach that market via Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited (KU) program. It’s had big effect on self-publishers: it can help you to build your brand as an author. You do this by creating shorter books, specifically for KU.
I’ve made a list of locations I want to use: a race track, a luxury yacht, and a rodeo. If I stopped writing now, and rewrote several scenes so that they happen in the locations I want, I’d lose momentum.
The new settings will change a lot of the novel: they’ll affect both the characters, and the plot itself. So I have a lot of rewriting in store, but I want to finish the major scenes of the story before I get into that.