Writing Process: Build Up Your Writing To Write Faster And Better

Writing Process: Build Up Your Writing To Write Faster And Better

Professional writers have a writing process. For everything. For fiction, nonfiction — there’s always a process. Beginning writers write, but pro writers build.

They start by creating the raw material. In my Top 70 Writing Tips, I called creating your raw materials making mud:

Look on all the writing you do as “making mud”. Be exuberant and messy.

You can do a lot with your mud. Just as you can build entire houses with mud bricks, you can write articles, novels, nonfiction books, short stories, essays, memoirs – in short, you can write anything and everything, if you make the basic building material, the “mud” first.

You can relax when you tell yourself that you’re just making mud

Once you realize that you’re just “making mud” when you’re writing, you stop worrying. There’s nothing serious about mud. You just write, and you know that you’ll sort out your creations later.

I’m winding up a long fiction project, and am planning a new trilogy. I’ve started creating the mud:

  • Scene locations
  • Character attributes and descriptions
  • Potential flaws for my main characters
  • And so on…

Usually I write my mud, and never look at it again. Its sole purpose is to kickstart my subconscious mind. At heart, I’m a fiction-writing pantser, but I know the plot points I have to hit, so I plan them in advance. That gives me a rough framework on which to hang my fiction.

By the way, if you’re not a fiction writer, a “pantser” is someone who writes by the seat of their pants, doing minimal plotting

This new project is a trilogy, so I’m planning the overall plot arcs… by making mud.

You need lots of materials to create anything

New authors want to write a project from go to whoa. It’s possible to do that, and sometimes you’ll manage it. However, it’s stressful.

Making mud is easier. It’s faster, too. You’ll also find that your writing inevitably improves, because you’re not insisting that your writing be perfect, at any stage.

The “mud” process is essential when you’re writing marketing materials. I explain my building-blocks process for copywriting in Copywriting for Writers. You create copy blocks, and then you put them together to write a sales page or series of advertisements, or whatever copy you’re writing.

Start a project by asking yourself what you need to create for that project

Write down the answer. “Write for this project I need”… and start thinking on paper.

Please do this.

I encourage my writing students to think on paper (or on the computer screen), because it saves time. Writers get stuck on projects because they haven’t broken down the project into tasks, and then they try to start writing immediately, without any form of pre-writing.

You can look on making mud as a form of prewriting. Essentially, it breaks your inertia, so you get moving on your projects.

Try it yourself. When making mud becomes part of your writing process, you’ll write more, and much more easily.

Make more ebook sales of all your fiction, when you write a serial

Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST

Fiction serials are platform-builders… consider writing at least one. Not only does a serial build your confidence, it also builds readers’ confidence in you. They’ll join your mailing list, and this has huge benefits for ebooks you’ve already published, and ebooks you’ll publish in future.

Write a serial with our new four-week class, Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Earn while you learn, with Angela’s Writing Classes..

Kindle Unlimited Makes Sales For Authors

Kindle Unlimited Makes Sales For Authors

I shared the story of my ill-fated “let’s not publish new stuff in KDP Select” experience on my Just Write a Book Blog. I definitely lost money with that little experiment. All the ebooks I which I hadn’t enrolled in KDP Select, and which were therefore not available in  Kindle Unlimited, are selling well now that I’ve enrolled them.

It’s amazing to me that I’m making many, many sales, just because the ebooks are free to Kindle Unlimited subscribers. Not what I would have predicted, but there it is.

Here’s one more author’s experience, Let’s Talk Numbers: It’s official! If you write novels, the new KU is AWESOME!:

“Not too shabby! As you can see, I was averaging about 15-20k pages read per day for a monthly total of 604,268 pages read in July. Multiply that by the official $0.0058 per page payment, and you get $3504.75 for the month.

“Thirty five hundred bucks!!! That’s almost twice what I earned from sales in the same time period!! And keep in mind that OGDDA didn’t come out until August 1, so these are earnings from only one title in one month.”

It’s not just novels, of course. I write a lot of short fiction, because I like to write, and short fiction is fun, and the read-throughs are there as well.

What I take from this: Amazon wants people to read. When people read, authors make SALES.

Test, to see what works for you

When Amazon changed the Kindle Unlimited (KU) rules, and decided to pay authors by pages read, the shrieks of doom abounded.

A couple of my Serial Fiction Bonanza students asked me whether Kindle Unlimited would still “work”. I told them that I trust Amazon to look after their customers — readers. And what’s good for readers is good for authors.

I’m a reader first. From the time I became aware that people wrote the stories I loved to read, I decided that one day I’d write books too.

As a reader, I adore Amazon. I can order as many books as my wallet will accommodate, whether the books are recently published, or were published years ago. Amazon is heaven for people who love to read.

It’s my experience that Amazon is heaven for authors, too. Your mileage may vary of course; everyone is different.

Test. See what works for you. If you decide that you don’t want to give Amazon exclusivity, that’s fine. You don’t have to, but if you haven’t tried KDP Select, test it. You may be surprised that it sells ebooks for you.

Have fun. :-)

Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST

Serial Fiction Bonanza: Get Readers, Get Fans — Make A Solid Income From Your Fiction FAST

Serial fiction has been around since the days of Charles Dickens. Self-publishing authors love it. Discover how to write serials in our new four week class. Coaching is included — you’re not writing alone.

By the end of the program, you’ll have published several episodes of your serial fiction. You’ll also be steadily marketing, while you’re writing and publishing.

Join us: you’ll have a lot of fun, and you’ll boost your fiction writing career.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Promote Your Writing In Any Way You Can

A reader asked how to promote your writing, when you write more and more. You can promote everything, it takes too much time. She was asking about promoting ebooks, specifically. She’s written around 15.

It’s a challenge. Do the best you can. With ebooks, you can try:

  • Bundling them. Try compiling three or more ebooks which are related into a new ebook. Don’t remove the original ebooks from sale;

  • Scheduling promotions for older ebooks;

  • Boost your mailing list for your newer ebooks by offering some older ebooks as freebies;

  • If you’re writing nonfiction, revise and update your ebooks. If you change enough of the material, you can turn an ebook into a new product;

  • Social media is your friend. Blog, and post. Develop new materials to help promote your older ebooks;

  • Advertise. Give older ebooks a push by running paid promotions.

Promote in any way you can. What you do doesn’t matter; do anything you like.

“I’ve got too much stuff to promote!” is a wonderful challenge to have… It means you’re productive, and are making money. Kudos to you. :-)


, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Ebook Promotion: How To Blog Your Novel

Ebook Promotion: How To Blog Your Novel

We’ve been talking about ebook promotion this week. It’s a popular topic, and I’ve had questions.

Several readers asked about how to blog your novel. Another reader put his current novel on the backburner for now, and doesn’t know how to tell his blog readers that he’s started a new novel.

Let’s look at blog topics for novelists first.

You’re using a blog to promote your novels: what can you write about?

The short answer: anything you like. :-) The only proviso is — try not to give spoilers.

A lot depends on your genre. Some genres lend themselves easily to blog promotions.

Historical and historical romance novelists have it easy. They can share fascinating info from their research on their blogs. Two Nerdy History Girls do it well.

English novelist Kate Mosse blogged her novel Labyrinth; here’s one of her posts from 2003. She shows that blogging your novels works. I read her blog at the time, and bought Labyrinth when it was released. The novel became a huge bestseller. In 2003, there weren’t as many novelists blogging as there are today. I’m sure that Kate’s blog helped Labyrinth’s success.

Julian Stockwin writes wonderful historical novels set in the Georgian period, the Thomas Kydd series. I’ve been receiving his monthly newsletter for years. I just checked, and sure enough, he has a blog, which covers his research travels, the background to his books, and much more.

Suspense novelist Alexandra Sokoloff blogs about writing and her books.

To repeat: you can blog about anything you like. It’s your blog. Blog about your family, your hobbies — whatever. Just remember to mention what you’re working on, and when your next novel will be released.

(Get readers to sign up to your mailing list, too.)

Everyone’s different. Follow your intuition. Blog about whatever is fun for you to talk about.

You’re blogging your novel: how do you tell readers you’re setting that novel aside for now?

You don’t need to tell readers anything. Just start blogging about your new novel.

Important tip: stay positive. Some authors blog about their writing challenges. It’s a mistake. We’ve all got problems. Your blog’s a promotional tool. No one needs to know that you’re sick of your characters and want to kick them off a tall cliff. If you’re sick of your current novel, and are starting a new one, just start blogging about your new novel.

Just start blogging: you’ll find stuff to talk about, I promise

You’re writing a novel. That’s exciting. Get your blog’s readers excited about your novel, and you’ll have readers who are eager to buy it on the day you upload it to Amazon.

Ebook Dominance: sell more copies of your ebooks, every day

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How would you feel if your sales doubled, then tripled — and then YOU hit the Kindle hot sellers’ lists?

Ebook Dominance helps you to turbocharge your marketing, and sell more ebooks today.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.