So You Have an Idea for a Book
You may have heard this over and over, but it really is true, write about what you love to read, whether it’s a romance, mystery, science fiction or a thriller. You may not be published yet, but you have the expertise as a reader.
Focus on an idea, your starting point, and then build on inspiration to carry on into the plot, conflict, and setting. Most ideas revolve around a problem, such as a murder, betrayal or a scandal. Whatever genre you choose, your ideas can come from anywhere, a newspaper article, an obituary, or a personal experience.
You can learn more about this from - A Complete "How To" Guide for Rookie Writers
Self-Editing/Rewrites - An
One of the dreaded but necessary evils for a writer is the query. This seems to be a huge topic for so many, and for good reason. This topic is probably one of the most discussed and questioned amongst writers, including myself. I learned some great tips and ways to query editors of magazines, as well as publishers for novels. I have a few tips, but I’m also going to include examples, which has always been the best way for me to learn how to do it for myself.
First, and foremost, you must be sure to research the best possible editor or publisher for your submission. If you are submitting a non-fiction magazine article please be sure you have read the magazine to understand what and how they publish their stories.
The cover letter is much like the query letter, but possibly a tad more brief, and follows the guidelines of any business letter. This will only be used if stated in their submission guidelines. They sometimes state you can copy it in the body of the email.
This is your “pitch”, your foot in the door description of your article and/or novel that will allow the editor to understand the full concept from beginning to end without further explanation. This will give them a taste of your writing skill and must be as well written as your story. This is a key component for any writer and must be done with all the talent and eloquence you can gather.
How long should your synopsis be? It will depend on the submission guidelines. If they only want 1-2 pages, then that’s what you submit. If they don’t give any specific length, than a good rule to follow is, 1-2 pages per every 50 pages of your manuscript. If you are submitting for an article, no more than one page should be sufficient.
Now the big question…how do I pack a 300 page manuscript into 12 double-spaced pages? Here’s where you get to be creative. The synopsis should read like your novel, telling the story, but just not as wordy. Here are a few tips on how to summarize your novel.
Learn more about Queries, Cover Letter's, and Writing a Synopsis here.