Please note, this is not a list of instructions – that needs no A B C. To write a book, ‘all’ you need to do, according to a cartoon doing the rounds on social media, is:
Sit. Stay. Write.
This is a list of other important bookish points.
A is for… Yes. Well. A is for the giant, the one we love to hate (but we love them really. Don’t we??) We can’t do without them, anyway. And if anyone’s still in the dark, just click the cover of any book on the right there and see where you land. (Then please come back.)
B is for… Books! This is why we do it – at the end of the whole long, painful, joyful process, you get to sit – or stand – with your books in your arms and whisper, like Gollum, my precioussss…
C is for… Cake. And coffee. Both indispensable.
D is for… Dogs. They’re not an absolute necessity, but you do get some very good ideas chasing through the woods after your canine. (See N)
E is for… Editor and editing. Also indispensable.
F is for… Formatter and formatting. You can learn to format, apparently. There are many brave and technical souls out there who do their own formatting and get it right. It’s on my list of things to try out for the next book, but I’m not optimistic…
G is for… Gin and – ah. No same letter ‘and’ this time. Gin, or any other favourite tipple, does make the writing life nicer. Weekends only, of course. (See T)
H is for… Home. Where much of the writing is done. And holidays. Where many ideas are collected.
I is for… The ideas collected in H. And ink – we’re happy not to use it much now.
J is for… Joyful. How you feel when the writing’s going well.
K is for… Kindle. Of course. Writers need to read a lot, and the best thing about your kindle – or any other eReader – is that you can take several hundred books everywhere you go. In your handbag.
L is for… Literature. So what is literature, exactly? Click to see what Britannica says.
M is for… Midnight. Or after. This is often when the best ideas come, and the most important thing to know here is: if you don’t write them down, they’ll be gone by the morning. They will. (see N)
N is for… Notebook. You want to be able to jot down those flashes of inspiration you get at inconvenient times. You need several: for your handbag, pocket, bedside table, kitchen… (See D and M)
O is for… Offer. As in special offer. A good way to increase your book’s visibility. And orange juice, which is good for us.
P is for… Pre-order. Often you can order a book in advance of publication, then one morning you wake up and it’s there on your kindle, as if by magic. Writers are always VERY HAPPY and GRATEFUL when people pre-order their book. Just sayin’.
Q is for… Quirky. Some of your characters at least should be quirky. (If anyone can think of a better Q, please let me know.)
R is for… Release day. Now the public can buy your book! You need a fridgeful of bubbly and a lot of cheese to celebrate, and you’ll probably cry. But it’s the best.
S is for… Twitter, Facebook, and all the others. Social media. You need to be active-ish in some at least. But it’s fun. Usually.
T is for… (See G)
U is for… Unseen by the reader are: the despair when it goes wrong, the sore bum from sitting too long, the joy when it goes right, the horrible messy desk, the state of your keyboard. And that’s as it should be.
V is for… Video trailer. Another good way to increase your book’s visibility. (See below)
W is for… Website. This is the blog section of mine. Feel free to look round the rest.
X is for… X-rated (but we won’t go there). And xxx as in mwah.
Y is for… You. Reader or writer or both. xxx for getting this far today. (See X part 2)
Z is for… zzz… sleep. This is what you do at night – until you wake up with a good idea. (See N)
And here’s the trailer promised in V. Chosen Child is on pre-order for February 15th on kindle. (See P) The paperback comes out the weekend after. I have started to stock the fridge. (See R)
all very good points Linda, but I suspect that quite a few of them are invisibly tattooed on our arms already!
Invisible tattoos – that would be an idea for a blog post too! 🙂 We could do a whole series – tattoos for writers, for mothers, for readers, for…
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Love the ABC, Linda but the book trailer was fabulous!
Thank you! My son helps me make the trailers – or maybe that should be I help him… We use MovieMaker so the costs are minimal, and it’s more fiddly than difficult. I can recommend it!
Your ABC makes me feel part of a whole community of writers who all share in the pleasure and pain of writing – which is a lot nicer than sitting on my bum and feeling isolated. Now I’m wondering what sort of cake helps you get through the process!
It’s a very pleasant community to be part of, isn’t it? Writing must have been a lonelier job before we had the www.
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I like this. Congratulations on your new title – best wishes for best seller 🙂
Thanks, Julia. Just a week to go till the eBook’s out – nerves are beginning to kick in… 🙂
Quintessential – your book trailer… xXx
Thanks, Carol, that’s very kind! I’ll pass it on to my son – he did a lot of the work on the trailer.
Enjoyed your ABC, Linda. The book trailer is wonderful, so atmospheric. Congratulations to your son. He has a real eye for what will work.
Thanks, Susanna. He’s brilliant at getting the timing right. I do the words and choose the images, he does the numbers parts. Couldn’t do without him!
Love the ABCs (but you forgot chocolate, lol) and I especially love the book trailer, which is intriguing and beautifully done. As we always say to our part-time dog, “Good jobber!” P.S. Can’t wait to read “Chosen Child.”
Chocolate! Of course… Thank you for liking the trailer, I’ll pass the compliment on to my co-trailer-maker. Pat the part-time dog for me!
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