Video: So You Want To Write A Novel?


Voice of Reason: “You do realize it takes years of honing your craft before you’ll be ready to produce a publishable book? And that’s assuming you’ve spent the last twenty years reading hundreds of novels.

Hopeful Writer: “I’ve been living my life. Not wasting my time reading. What do you think I am? Some kind of dork?

Wow. Simply wow. I loved this video! It speaks to the all too real thoughts that many beginning writers have about the craft of writing and the publishing industry. Yes, believe it. There are people out there who are just like the Hopeful Writer in the video below. They don’t know the first thing about writing or the business but they plan on being a bestselling writer within a month.

Watch this!

Voice of Reason: “So how do you plan on getting your book published?

Hopeful Writer: “I’m taking a copy to Random House.

Simply genius!

  • Monstar

    This video would have a lot more credibility if it hadn’t been right next to a flashing banner advert with a lurid semi-naked picture of vampiric nookie above the strapline “At the crossroads of death and desire…a woman tastes a pleasure no mortal is meant to survive.” She has, apparently, been….’Taken By Midnight’!
    So tell me again about the ‘qualified’ professionals ‘honing their craft’, and also tell me that the agent behind that opus feeds his children by only taking on two clients a year.

  • Monstar, make that two *NEW* clients per year (for an established agent) and you won’t be far wrong.

    Agents get saturated by dealing with the requirements of their clients. An agent with a stable of 20 authors who’s working a 40 hour week has 2 hours/author/week — but they’re not going to be evenly distributed; Joe Q. Newbie is not going to be getting as much attention as Jane X. Bestseller.

    Moreover: agents are on commission, typically 15% of gross. Most authors don’t earn enough to live off, so to make a decent living an agent needs to rep closer to 40 authors than 20.

    An agent who’s starting out needs to acquire clients rapidly, or they’ll starve — but once they’ve got a list of productive professionals who *are* earning enough to live on, and have pruned the no-hopers, things tend to go static; successful authors can keep going for decades, so the retirement loss rate is probably only 1-2 clients per year.

    Hence the low acquisition rate.

  • Thank you for beating me to the punch, Charlie. When it comes to the publishing industry and all of its facets, most people have no knowledge of the truth behind the scenes.

    Another unknown fact most people don’t know: On average it takes an agent seven years of hard work to reach a point where they are making money and can quit their own day jobs. Some strike gold of course and land JK Rowling, but most have to scrape by just like the writers they are trying to support.

  • Bad Bob

    I do happen to have a novel in the works, I have read extensivly, not chained to the mind numbing video games, I grew up a bit differently, reading was the best way to lose how hard our lives were.
    I am far from finished with it, but when completed, I do hope to have it published.
    I think it’s very wrong to discourage anyone who might want to contribute a work, after all where do you think the new stuff comes from, and how did the \pro’s\ get started, there had to be a first effort.
    So in conclusion I say go for it let your mind take off, but do as I do ,thats to think about how to make the reader lose him or her self in your caracters, and find an alternate reality of sorts within.

  • I worked on my novella for eight years. It is complete, though not yet published.

    I think this video is cute. Thanks for letting all us dorks and dimwits know just how it is.

    As for Stephen King’s book ON WRITING, I agree with the cartoon characters on the video (by the way, I love their character and depth).

    Just a rhetorical question: Could you be a little more snarky?

    It might create more interest. Just a thought.

  • Hey there,

    I wrote the video, and I’m thrilled you posted it on your site. Glad you liked it, and I enjoyed reading the comments as well.