Multiple books and enough sales to quit the day job – it sounds good, doesn’t it?
Those are my goals even back when I barely realized that I did secretly dream about such success and wouldn’t admit that writing was more to me than a hobby. Then one day I looked in the mirror and confessed I wanted to be a full time author. And I realized to do that, I had to take it seriously.
Where are you on your writing journey?
Taking writing seriously means a lot of different things. Sure there are the quick list of better covers, professional editors, multiple formats. But it means something far more important to me. It means meeting the expectations of fans. And one of their biggest beyond quality is not waiting around too long for the next book.
Seriously. Want an example: George R.R. Martin. Need I say more? Waiting a year for the next book in a series was acceptable when I was a teenager, which was, ahem, last century. These days… three to four months between books is far more appreciated by fans. Six months is tolerable. Your fans may forgive you if it takes a year, but you’d better keep them updated on progress with a few sneak peaks! Heck, I’m currently beginning a two year wait for the last book in a series I’ve enjoyed. TWO YEARS! I’m glad the author told me, but yipes! I’ll have forgotten everything by then.
But writing while having a full time job isn’t conducive to high output. Unless you are one of those 100 wpm typists. Of course, if you end up deleting pages that went no where or get stuck on an idea, it really doesn’t matter how fast you typed the words!
Can you write multiple books while holding down a full time job and maintaining a family? YES!
I wrote 4 1/2 books in one year. And I kept both the full time job and marriage intact.
It isn’t speed. And it isn’t magic. I even fit in editing so I could publish some of those books. How?
Part of it is mindset and the other part … well I’m thinking of offering a pilot course to share the techniques I evolved to reach my target of four quality novels a year – you know, ones I’m proud of and aren’t just fluff!
Size of this pilot course will be very limited. Right now I’m collecting names of people who may be interested and want to learn more. If that is you, GREAT! Let me know by leaving a comment below (and click the follow comment box so I get your email) or use the contact box below. And tell me what your goals are as a writer!
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Just got around to checking your page, and I must say, I really dig it! Sleek design and very easy to navigate. (Plus good content)
4 1/2 books in one year is bloody INSANE! And I think I mean that in a good way.
I’m juggling full-time work and marriage as well – though no kids, but a penchant for huge, immersive video games – and I’m hoping against hope to complete my next book before 2017! You do make some very good points about the fans, but when writing fantasy – and a series, at that – there are a lot of thought processes and editing involved.
I suppose this means I am indeed interested in hearing more! 🙂
Can I ask which four books? Or at least about the genre and general length?
Personally I’d be very content with one novel a year (and a few short-stories etc. on the side) That is at least a goal I can see myself reaching, but I still fear for the quality and continuity. Writing my last book, I found the biggest time sink was the editing. I guess this boils down to experience, as I can’t see myself doing 5+ revisions on my next.
Once again, 4 books is very, very impressive!
Glad you found my site and even better to have found it user friendly and useful! 🙂
Yeah, 4 1/2 books was a little insane and I’ve scaled that back to a goal of 3 (at least) in 2016. The four books were my new dystopian series Friends of my Enemy. The first is 11 short stories but the remaining four are full length, over 90,000 words, novels. And the half was half of an epic fantasy, so around 50,000 words.
Editing does take time and is somewhat included in that figure, as I edited on the side while writing. Because, like you, I do at least 5 passes before sending the manuscript to an editor and then going through one last time after that. It is all about work flow and making use of time for me.
I’ve finished the first session of the pilot run of Writing Great Novels Faster. It was awesome to teach and I got great feedback from the students. Yay! So I’m working on adding in some details and cleaning up the slides to make a video course. And it covers nearly exactly what you mentioned as being the big hurdle with writing a series – having the series bit figured out enough to add in clues to later events! Plus editing, and creating characters, and world building. I’m hoping to have the first three videos which will be a free introduction up no later than mid-January and hopefully before. I’ll let you know when they are available!
Oh boy… I completely messed up the reply chain… Oh, well, my reply sits comfortably below. All by its lonesome.
It is always good to step out of the lines, right? 😉
Okay, that means I can rest a little assured, at least. My book clocked in at 247,000 words… Which I’m starting to realize is just too damn much!
I’m aiming to keep the next one shorter – but if I even approach your levels, I should be able to churn out at least one every year or so.
I tried editing while writing with my last one, but felt like I just got stuck between hating what I’d written and aching to continue.I think I’ll give editing as I go another whirl this time, though.
Thanks for the reply, looking forward to the videos!
That is a hefty book! To think my first editor suggested I cut Born of Water in half because she felt it ran long at 110,000! Lol. I didn’t cut it either, but knowing more about plotting Now I can see the advice had merit in some ways… if that trilogy hadn’t been about what it was about, that is. Always options and choices! Writing has rules, but it is still expression and that can trump rules!
You’ve inspired me to get my project moving faster. I hope to get those first videos out soon! 🙂