A client of mine is quite determined. To get published. And she will one day. She will get an agent and then a book contract. Why? For a number of reasons, and many unpublished writers could learn from her and her story.
1. She is determined and won't give up.
2. She had a good story idea.
3. Her story idea (ghosts and the paranormal) are currently hot trends and sell ridiculously well.
4. She shaped her story and characters, plotted, and planned.
5. She hired an editor (me) to help her. She got a ms evaluation and copy edit.
6. She has an open mind. When I suggested that what she thought was a trilogy was actually one book, she went away, mulled it over, and realized I was right. I showed her how combining elements of all three created a much more powerful story.
7. She made these changes willingly. She took advice and used it. There is no diva in her. She knows when to check her ego at the door. More writers need to master this.
8. She is still reworking the story, and months later realized the prologue had to go. Lesson? You cannot be attached to your writing. You have to do what is best for the story, even if it means cutting chunks of material out.
9. She understands that a story is not just about a good idea - it's also about the words used to tell that story. A good idea doesn't get you far if you refuse to learn the basic mechanics of grammar and writing, and refuse to learn something about the craft of writing.
You can read this soon-to-be published writer's work here.
An agent has used a clip of her writing to showcase what good writing is. Learn from her and then buy her book when it's out. Kaleen Harding. You heard it here first :)