IAM Looks better in the App! download now from your preferred Store

Get Over Yourself and Get Some Help

One September about a decade ago, I learned of National Novel Writing Month, commonly known as NaNoWriMo. Many of us have attempted to write 50,000 words in a month during that challenge, and it remains a popular and useful event. When I finally “won” after several failed attempts, I was thrilled, and more than a little stunned. 

And then came the inevitable question, what do I do now? 

Short answer: I did nothing. I was too embarrassed to read those words again. I lacked the confidence to face them and wrangle them into something better. And I didn’t know where to begin or who to ask. 

And so they went into a drawer. As did the winning manuscripts for the next few years. 

Five years ago I joined the local Austin, Texas, group of NaNoWriMo participants. This chapter was a unicorn among chapters, and the “MLs” (Municipal Liaisons) went well above the basic cheerleading to get you 1667 words every day. They held seminars to help writers think beyond November and help you understand it was possible to publish. They hosted silent retreats at picturesque local locations to inspire creativity, kept it fun with midnight costume parties to kick off the month with a bang, and kept writing groups going year round. 

It was a very non-threatening way to ask my stupid questions. I learned what a developmental editor was. What a line editor did, and what a copy editor did not do. I learned that a first draft is a win for NaNoWriMo, but also the first of many steps to seeing your darling words come to life. I got over myself and found editors totake those embarrassing, horrible manuscripts and help me polish them into something I can be proud of… and publish. 

We’ve poured those lessons and many more into this month’s issue. For those experienced and published authors, you’ll learn how to improve how you work with your team. If you’re just starting out and have yet to finish your draft, you’ll learn what mistakes to avoid. 

No one journeys up the mountain of success alone. Every successful writer I’ve met has a team, and many credit their editor(s) as being the key person who helped them the most. 

Dig out those dusty manuscripts and dive into this month’s issue. Then find the editor you need to make them shine. 

Listen to this article:

Featured Articles

Expanding Your Empire

How to Use Merchandise Sales on your Website to Make Money and Grow Your Brand In today’s economy, it’s a given that relying on a single stream of income is

Read More »

Naming the Beast

Recognizing Imposter Syndrome Angela Archer This is part one of a three part Mindset mini-series focusing on imposter syndrome. You may or may not have heard of it, you may

Read More »

Ten Tips for BookFunnel

BookFunnel specializes in e-book and audio distribution. Authors can send e-books directly to readers’ preferred reading devices, collect email addresses, participate in group promotions, and more. BookFunnel has created tools

Read More »

Share This Article

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on whatsapp


You May Also Like These Popular Articles

Before You Go...

Sign up for Our Newsletter and a Free Trial of our all-Access Pass!