Most Asked Questions Answered Part I

When interviewed or when giving author talks, there are some questions that crop up time and time again. Here are a few. In a few days I’ll post some more. If you have other questions about writing or publishing after Part II is posted, feel free to add yours to the list.

Where can I get ideas to write my stories?
Ideas come from everywhere! You can get ideas from something you overhear at school, on the playground or at work. You can read about a famous person that you’d like to delve into more deeply. Or you can look at your own pet a new way. What is he thinking right now?

How do I know if my idea is any good?
Does it interest YOU? Are you excited to write about it? To research it? Does it make you want to read or write more?

If you are trying to sell it as a book, make sure there aren’t tons of other books exactly like yours out there. If there are, how is YOUR book going to stand out?

One editor of one of my books told me this. “I ask my authors, “Why do people NEED your book?”

What’s your favorite part about writing?

My favorite part of writing is after I’ve written the first draft. It’s the REWRITING. In fact, I’m addicted to it. I love it so much, if I have a pen in my hand after I get the copy of my book, I’d probably STILL be crossing out words and rewriting the text!

When my son was in school and he’d bring home letters from his teachers, if I had a pen in my hand, I’d unconsciously rewrite those letters.
“Mom,” he’d say to me. “You don’t have to correct the teacher’s letters.”
Oops!

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2 Responses to “Most Asked Questions Answered Part I”

  1. Fatima Says:

    Did you like rewriting as a student? Or did you start liking to rewrite as you became an author? Students at school start groaning when we have tp rewrite as essay or story.

    • lizbooks Says:

      I didn’t like rewriting as a student. But usually I wasn’t asked to rewrite as a student. (Which means the teachers weren’t asking enough of me!) I only liked rewriting after I had been writing awhile. This is very common. In the beginning, rewriting is VERY difficult. It’s only after practice that it becomes fun and addictive.

      I don’t blame students for groaning at all! Most of the time it’s because students don’t know HOW to improve their writing. Another reason is that they may think their story is just fine the way it is and they have tons of other work to do too. (The other work is true. The “just fine the way it is” is NOT usually true. Lois Lowry, author of THE GIVER and NUMBER THE STARS, says she never reads her books after they are published. Why? Because she starts rewriting them even when they are in book form. She isn’t satisfied even with her award winners! That is a typical reaction from a writer. We are never satisfied our work is good enough and ALWAYS want to improve upon it.

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