Finishing the first draft of your novel is so exciting, but what’s next? You might want to head straight to start editing your book, but actually, this might not always be the best plan. Here are some things to try instead!
First and foremost go and do something fun to celebrate. So many writers never get to the end of their novels, and the fact you’ve got your first draft down is genuinely wonderful. So make sure that you give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back and celebrate in style.
Give your novel some space
Rushing into the editing process as soon as you finish your novel can be more destructive than helpful. You need to give it some space and come back to it when you have had some time apart. If you edit right away, everything will still be too fresh, and you might feel too attached to your novel to do it justice.
Get out and about
You’ve probably spent a fair bit of time chained to your desk or staring at your screen of late. So take this time to air out, and remember what it’s like to do something else other than writing!
Come up with new ideas
Now that you’ve got your first draft down you can start to allow yourself to think of new writing projects and ideas, start brainstorming what you might work on next when the editing process is over.
Read books in your genre
Never underestimate the power of reading. Using this time to read books in a similar genre can help you get in the right mindset to edit and give you some good ideas and helpful tips too.
Make a publishing marketing plan
Now is the time you should be thinking about how you’ll market your book when it is finished. Even if you hope to have it traditionally published, using social media and having a robust author platform from which to promote your book is useful. If you do want to try and get a publishing deal, start researching relevant publishers and drafting your synopsis and query letters at this time too.
Ask for feedback
Before you get too stuck into the editing process ask some people whose opinions you can count on to be helpful and fair to give you some constructive criticism which you can choose to use or not use as you start to reshape your book.
Go back to the drawing board!
OK, after all that it’s time to start editing. Remember the editing process can be grueling and sometimes even harder than writing the novel in the first place, but keep persevering and dedicate yourself to making your book the very best it can be.
By following the above tips, you can make sure that you head into the editing process feeling refreshed and ready to start to shape your first draft into something truly spectacular. So make sure you give yourself time and space to do so, and then get back to it!
I do believe I've followed most of these, except for how make a market publishing plan. I am still a bit clueless on how to go about this. I have looked for publishers for kids' books, but noticed that some do not accept unsolicited manuscripts. This has been the hardest part to get started on.
As for some of the others, I'm still asking for feedback, but have yet to hear back from some of the people I sent the story to. And I have been trying to find other stuff to write. I began a sequel, but it's been some time since I last worked on it. And I just began working on different types of poems, but it's been a few days since I did any of those. I've been trying to read more books in the kids' genre. I've done this since before I even began working on my story. It may have been what made me want to write such a story. As for the memoir, I am still not sure where else to attempt to submit that one. Or even to think of self-publishing. Someone recommended lulu.com as a self-publishing site. I've looked at it some, but as still a little hesitant. And today, the leader of the writers lab I have been attending give a link to a poetry contest. I'm also pretty hesitant about that one. Only one poem can be sent it by one person, so that is making it hard to choose just one.
Plenty of decisions to be made!
Children's books are tough to self-publish because you can't market to your target audience. Those are better handled with a traditional publisher, which likely means finding an agent first.
Plenty of decisions to be made, indeed:)
Get any writing done today?
Good timing since I've just finished my first draft:)
Celebrating the finishing of the first draft sounds like a plan:)
Have a great weekend.
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