Because hitting publish is just the first step

A row of cupcakes with blue icing.
A row of cupcakes with blue icing.
Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

The first time I decided to self-publish a book, the term “indie publishing” hadn’t yet become a part of the publishing lexicon. It was 2004, the vast majority of people were still wary of spending money online, and the Kindle hadn’t yet been invented.

It’s not worth doing if it’s not replicable

Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash

Every November, as part of the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), writers have a Black Friday tradition. Anyone who wants to take part aims to write 10,000 words in a day.

There’s a lot of bad writing advice floating around. Have you bought into any of it?

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

There’s a lot of writing advice floating around these days. So much, in fact, that writing for writers has become a whole industry.

1. You must write every day

Must you? Why? What happens if you only write every other day? Do the writing police come and take you to a re-education camp where they burn all your published work? (I’ve been working on a dystopian novel, can you tell?)

This is especially crucial during a pandemic

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When you work from home, there will be a million different things vying for your attention — the television, Facebook, your kids, your pets, the dirty laundry, the dishes in the sink that haven’t been washed since yesterday, Facebook, the nice weather, Zoom sessions with co-workers you haven’t seen in a while.

I went from writing my first novel in 7 years to my next in 7 months

Self-portrait by Natasha Khullar Relph

My first novel took seven years to write. This is something I wore as a badge of honor as I was doing it, but that embarrasses me no end now.

I wasn’t picky

Photo by asoggetti on Unsplash

I wasn’t picky.

Natasha Khullar Relph

Award-winning journalist and author — Written for The New York Times and TIME. Helping writers make money doing work they love: www.natasharelph.com

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