I love masterlists and writing reference posts, so I thought I could make a short one to go with my “Tips for prospective writers” post. These are some links I found helpful as I followed these steps, so I hope they’ll be useful for you too.
- Read a lot
Sometimes it’s difficult to find what you’re looking for, and sometimes you find it and it’s too expensive. For those times, I recommend doing this:
-Find your favourite books on Goodreads. They probably belong to a list of similar books. See what other readers have added to the list and increase your Want-to-Read bookshelf. You can also check the most popular lists (and all the rest) here, but there are too many, so proceed with caution.
–Here is another masterlist where you can find many sites where you can legally download books for free.
-Do everything in this tumblr post: How to legally get cheap or free ebooks instead of pirating like a garbage person. If you’re an ebook-hater, some books won’t be available in this day and age, but authors and goodreads still organize giveaways for paperbacks; and bookdepository, already mentioned in that post, will always be your friend.
- Join the community
You will have done it if you’ve followed the tips to legally get cheap or free books, but you can get more out of this experience if you’re a prospective writer, so:
-Follow your favourite writers and publishers on goodreads, twitter, facebook, their blogs… Join their newsletters and read what they have to say. It’s always interesting!
- Don’t be shy
Yeah, you people should be the ones telling me how to do it. I just try to reply whenever I have something to say and keep my fingers crossed, but if you’re following your favourite authors, maybe telling them why you love their books would be a good way to break the ice. You’d like that if you were in their place, right? And they’re human after all. Amazing human beings, for sure, but still human.
-I don’t have links for this one, but please remember that being polite is always necessary when you talk to other people.
How you want to practice is very personal, so you may want to go look around the Internet and check what works for you. Here are some things that did the trick for me:
-Lee Welch shared a post On ignoring writing advice that I found extremely useful. I have problems with anxiety and self-doubt, but now I’ve embraced the thought that my first book won’t be perfect and it doesn’t have to be. I’m also thinking about writing some short stories before I write a novel. It’s all an experiment, right? We’ll see how it goes.
-Anyway, in order to ignore the advice, you have to read it first. And there are lots of places for that. I think I may make another masterlist about writing advice, but if you want to do some reading now, there’s a very complete list in thewritepractice.
-You’ll also find lots of sites that will share prompts daily, like the popular Writing Prompts account on tumblr.
-And, again, a good way to practice and receive feedback from readers is writing fan fiction. There are many places, but my favourite is Archive of Our Own.
There are many websites and books about finding beta-readers and learning how to beta-read. There are courses and a lot of information online, but a quick Google search gave me these ones that seem helpful enough if you’re not going to go professional:
-“How to Beta Read” by Corrine Jackson.
-“Five Commandments of Beta-readers” on Author Accelerator.
-“How to Be a Good Beta Reader” on BookBaby.
-“How Being a Beta Reader Has Made Me a Better Writer” by Jo Ullah.
That’s all for now, but please let me know if you have any favourite sites, or if you’ve written some posts yourselves on these topics. I want to read them as well!