Blog by Toby Welch

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Even More Writers Advice to Their Newbie Writing Self

Vance Nevada lives in Blackfalds, Alberta, and is the author of Wrestling in the Canadian West and is the 2010 winner of the James C. Melby Historian award. He would tell his beginning writer self three things:

"1. Never underestimate the usefulness of an editor.  Even if you are a subject matter expert, by the time that you have written, re-written and reviewed your own material over and over, there is a great value in having an unrelated pair of eyes look over your stuff. Even if your work is solid from a technical sense, these folks can help to steer greater development of certain areas of your work. Related to an editor though, this service can get very pricy very fast ... and in the end you may have a significant cash outlay and still need to edit for grammar/spelling etc. So make sure you know what you’re getting and the end cost.

2. If your work relies on input or interviews with anybody, even if they are really into your project, expect that without some gentle nudging, you may never get what you need in time. Some people you may never hear back from at all. Inevitably, it is the folks that you extended invitations for an interview on multiple occasions that will be the first to criticize the finished product anyway.

3. If you’re writing your first book, recognize that the book industry is different from probably most out there. Unless you’re starting from some point which readily gives you a platform to promote, there is a lot of self-promotion involved to get your title moving. Just putting it out there on boom shelves isn’t a guarantee that anyone will be interested enough to buy. Explore every opportunity possible to promote yourself and your title, any potential forum where your target audience may already be planning to attend."