In a matter of days I’ll no longer be simply a writer. As the sun crests the horizon April 28th, I’ll be a published novelist! The very thought of it can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many details to line out, and so much to think about that my head is spinning! I’m sure veteran authors with several books under their belts will look on and smile at us debut authors, knowing the adventure that’s ahead.

In my last blog, I mentioned some ideas to calm pre-publishing jitters so that you can drink in the joys! Today, I’d like us to consider some organizational ways to prepare for publication. Here’s a few of the insights I’ve learned as I’ve journeyed toward publication:

Keep Focused – When you’ve yet to connect with the right agent or publisher, it’s easy to get discouraged and think that time may never come. But if the Lord has placed a message on your heart to share with the world, He will–in His time and His way–bring it to fruition. It’s our job as writers to be in submission to His will and be productive while we wait for Him to act. So I encourage you to keep focused on learning the writing craft, meeting new people, making connections, and most of all keep writing! After all, the more polished your manuscript is and the more manuscripts you write, the farther ahead you’ll be when the Lord places the right publisher in your path!

Plan Ahead Once your manuscript is accepted by a publisher or you determine to self-publish, time becomes a precious commodity. There are deadlines to meet, edits to make, and final read-throughs to wade through. When you throw a marketing plan into the mix, things can get pretty hairy! It’s best to map out your guest blogs, giveaways, book signings, marketing materials early on so that life doesn’t become too overwhelming. Gage your time and activities and be sure to keep a good record of your commitments!

Never Stop Learning  The writing industry is ever changing and authors need to change and grow along with it. Each aspect of writing takes a great deal of effort to master, whether it be deep point of view, plot, characters, or theme. Take time to study the intricacies of writing. Read books that teach the craft of writing and well-written novels, attend conferences, take writing courses. It’s never too early to learn about marketing, and what is involved in the process of editing and publishing. Drink in all the knowledge you can as you journey toward publication. I guarantee you’ll be thankful you did. And so will your publisher!

How about you? What insights have you gained along your writing journey? I’d love to hear your thoughts! May the Lord bless your writing journey!

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