How to become a Published NovelistBecome a Published Novelist?
When you want to be a writer, the hardest thing you can do is get published.
Don't make a fool, I have lived a great one - but one that is becoming increasingly rare for young people. Newspapers are more eager than ever - and they have never been patience - with a first novel that doesn't spatter. Besides, your skills are just as threatened if a ledger splashes.
When you really want to be a writer, the last thing you want to be is an Achievement. Now, with every town in the UK having their own literature festivals, I could plausibly fly all year, every year, from Swindon to Peterborough to Aberdeen and chat endlessly about what I have already wrote - for the humble cost of scorching self-loathing.
Of course, for novel writers, the acceptation of an unknown source of revenue has always been part of the packet. As I plowed through my first scripts, the need to earn at least a living was a gentle motivator, although the desire to finance more textbooks was pure lust.
Finally, if you really want to get really wealthy, you're better off opening the newspaper kiosk for raffle lots. I' ve sunk books like rocks, I had bestsellers. But with the exceptions of a few selected experts whose reputation is guaranteed, you are only as good in this deal as your last one.
It may feel like this, which is the only reason for the otherwise confusing and not very comfortable change in my working environment since my 7th novel We Need to Talk About Kevin, which struck a soft spot and finally turned into a game. Although publishing houses complement their meagre advertising budget with free self-advertising as a matter of routine.
However, the colonisation of my journal by auxiliaries, which has nothing to do with the seemingly hermetic, hermetically sealed work of a writer, cannot be placed at the foot of poverty. It' s the result of a deep uncertainty that has settled into my bone over a decade of living one of my hairs away from a trader.
This uncertainty, some of which are economical, seems to have caused a constant terrorism, to turn down something - anything that brings me cash, raises my profile or supports the sale of books. So at one point in my life I urgently need to get my next first proposal underway, review my obligations for the next few month or so: several hours of interviewing in the Netherlands and Belgium magazines, together with the feared photoshootings.
Literature festivals in London's Soho, Charleston, Birmingham, Cheltenham, Newcastle, Folkestone, Cambridge, Wapping and Bali (yes, yes, yes, tell us another sobbing tale - but Southeast Asia includes a 17-hour flight and a confusing seven-hour lag in terms of travel times; I still have more to work on than my tan). Dinner with my publishers and editors to talk about a new masthead.
It' a shortlisted National Shortlist Award ceremonial - and awards are a particularly devastating moment and emotions, because in most cases you don't succeed. This is a standpoint magazin promotion for future Standpoint sponsors, for whom I am writing a weekly newspaper for. As a whole, my forthcoming timetable does not even begin to reflect the kind of lives I registered for when I was seven years old.
All of these distractions, we must admit, are based on a multitude of current insults that confronts any belletrist who is stupid enough to have stuck a hatchet over the balustrade: asking to paint other writers' novels (so please reading them). Applications for reviews of other authors' works (so please consult them - and because the reviewer is only paying for their own words, these orders will cost about 25 cent per minute; the book's authors will probably detest you for your efforts).
Presentation of the novel. Interviews with international papers asking you to speak in detail about a novel that you are not only weary of, but of which you cannot even recall, as the volume was published two or three years ago and is only now being published in Greek. The website and the accompanying pages demand "Your favourite book", "Your five favourite books", "Your ten favourite books", "The one that has transformed your life", "Your Christmas recommended books" and "Your favourite holiday beach".
Meanwhile, every writer is supposed to withdraw all the registers for a publication of a work. As the overall editorial industry becomes more distressed about the end of writing, as we once knew - I am not the only uncertainty here myself - the more desperate their journalists become when authors take any chance to draw publicity.
That means you have to put aside a few days or, in the case of authors who are publishing at the same time in the English-speaking areas of Canada, New Zealand, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom, like me for up to four month for e-mail, TV and TV-interview, relentless photoshoots, if you used up your small, cheesy clothes already at the last publication of your books, even more festivals and bookshop performances and a lot of editorial tasks: Feature and commentary songs, which refer to the non-fiction books, which have to do with your novel nominetically, filling slits like "My Favourite Thing" or rotten, individual bare-alls, which make you appear interesting.
How long before a writer writes a novel? Authoring the book itself gets in shape here and there, like the waste disposal at bedtime. I' ve become pervertedly nostalgically after my former business failures - when my main emphasis was still purely and the book was still enjoyable, even if nobody was reading it.
I have never grasped why so many men seem to be intrigued by "writing life", and if this outline of today's true "writing life" seems to disappoint, then it should be. This fear has faded into the background with the publishers' latest hanky-twisting on whether there will be a publisher in ten years' time.
But how many reputations that the general population has learnt to recognise, will they soon overlook? Admittedly, I still have to finish the accounts, and HarperCollins doesn't have to do it. If a publisher can easily withdraw, the assurance of a "contract" is largely wrong. Yet able to lead a life through mother tongue editing, my generations of authors has been fortunate.
Perhaps many prospective authors would like to have an invite to Bali to make a complaint. So not only am I worried that the whole commercial publisher industry will implode as individual gifted votes are drowded by a populistic scream of amateur readers who want to be seen on the web for the cost of double-clicking.
I' m also concerned about the near futures of authors who make it their business to spend their valuable times with blogs, tweets, e-mail, text and facesbook; only then to be blown up in the confusingly complex architectures of gigs, prominent profile, website question forms and series of photos that are based on the breakable foundations of a lonely fantasy at the desktop.
Smearings in an author's journal either become pretexts for hesitation or subjects of justified resentments as competitors for lonely, reflecting lives, which rightfully represent the reality.