Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Learning from first experiences

My first heartbreak taught me to guard my heart a bit more.

My first job taught me that I didn't want to do manual labor my whole life, so I took my butt back to school.

My first child taught me responsibility.

and...I'm still learning from my first manuscript.  I haven't quite put the lid on this one, though have it nicely tucked away under my bed. I use it as a learning tool of all the things I did wrong.  

So what did I learn from my first manuscript?

  •                 The end doesn't mean I'm finished.
  •                 Writing the manuscript is the easy part. Everything else following is hard work. Be prepared.
  •                 I need a road map and sign posts that indicate movement in the story.
  •                 Writing the story as it needs to be told is one thing, writing for publication is another animal entirely.
  •                 Bloated stories are never a good thing. Stick to word count guidelines.
  •                 POV matters. There is a purpose.  The manuscript needs to be more than a one person story when using multiple POVs.

I'm still learning from my first.  What have you learned?


  1. Great bullets points for us to keep in mind for every manuscript. Thanks!

  2. That I need to work on being more patient. And persevere.

  3. Well said! I learned so much from my first manuscript. About making plots more complicated; about making things harder on my MC.
    Great post!

  4. Thanks Jess.
    Patience, yes, Buffy, I forgot that one. Lydia, great point about plot.

  5. Oh well... that first was a long time ago, but it was a murder who-done-it. So I learnt how to twist a plot, to conseal a bad guy, and these little tricks I'm still using in my fantasies if you can believe that! I also learnt how much research is involved if you want to get it right. There really is no such thing as over kill, eh?

    It is on my shelf, and just the other day I was thinking about reading it again to see where 15 years has taken me. It might be fun to see. Your post inspired me, i might take a peek and shove it back.

  6. I learned soooo much from my first. The most important lesson being: less is more.

  7. Hey Tania, I'm terrified of dusting mine off. Not sure what I'll find.

    Hi Anita,thanks for sharing.


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