Many writers I know go to conferences and pitch their novels before they’re complete. I understand why because I’ve done the same thing. We’re excited about our work and sharing it with publishers. But here’s the problem: until the manuscript is complete–which means developmentally edited and line edited–it isn’t finished. It’s okay to get feedback to know if a publisher is interested in the content or plot, but submitting it too soon could bite you in the butt.
Here’s what could happen if you rush into publication:
- If a publisher agrees to print your book and it gets negative reviews and doesn’t sell it’ll be more difficult to get published the next time. And if you want a career at writing novels this could set you back. If you were a publisher would you want to endorse someone who failed the first time?
Most published authors will tell you that they didn’t get their first book published until they wrote FIVE books. I don’t want to discourage you from writing. NOT AT ALL. I’m saying, if you’re going to hurry, then write those first five books and get them out of the way. If you do I promise your writing will improve along the way.
You have nothing to lose, right?
I know, you think you’ll lose time you don’t have. But think about it. Your time won’t be wasted. You’ll be working on learning the craft, improving your skills, and telling your stories. And you’ll be doing something you love to do–write. Yes, you’ll have to keep your day job, but not for long. If you take baby steps, map out your writing journey, and plan ahead for a writing career you’ll come out ahead in the long run.