Thursday, March 27, 2014

Todd's Email: Never Put The Cart Before The Horse

I thought I'd share an email I received recently.  I get emails like this all the time.

The Actual Email:
Dear Bro:. Creason.
I wanted to tell you how much I've enjoyed your Famous American Freemasons books.  I've never done any writing before, but your books have inspired me to give it a try, and I'd like to do something similar to what you have done with Freemasonry and American history.  I was hoping to get some advice from you.  Who designs your book covers?

What I Read:
Dear Bro:. Creason,
I'm thinking about going to a bar tonight to meet women.  What do you think we should name our son?

Actually, these two emails are almost identical.  Too many aspiring authors put the cart way before the horse for some reason.  They are thinking about agents, and publishing, and book covers, and they haven't even figured out what exactly they want to write yet.  Start with the writing!
Remember: don't put the cart before the horse, and never let
your cart overload your ass like this guy did!
My Advice?
Write every single day--I try to write at least 500 words per day.  Only about 10% of what I write winds up being published in a book or on a blog.  Even after more than twenty years, most of what I write is absolute garbage and nobody ever sees it.  Writing is about practice.  Figuring out what works and what doesn't work for you.  And what many aspiring authors don't understand is that writers write because they love to write.  It's not really a choice.

So find a quiet place, and write.  Give it some time.  Go back periodically and read what you've written.  You're going to discover one of two things:
1.) You're going to find out you don't enjoy writing at all.
2.) Those 500 words per day are going to look more like a 1,000 per day before very long.  And that's a very good sign that you may very well be a writer.
And about book covers, and publishers, and agents . . . worry about that when you get there.


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