Blogger: Rachel Zurakowski
Location: Books & Such Main Office, Santa Rosa, Calif.
Yesterday Gina brought up an excellent reason for why some multi-published authors might end up writing the “same” story more than once. She pointed out that authors often write on contracted deadlines. The books are to be written and turned into the publisher by a certain date. This does leave much less time for the rewriting and editing that can eliminate the “ruts.” (Thank you, Gina.)
An author’s first book isn’t usually written on a deadline. An author can take years to work over the manuscript. Then the book is published, does well, and the author is offered a new contract based on a synopsis and the first few chapters of a story. The new contract comes with a due date for the complete manuscript. Suddenly there’s pressure! Without a doubt the shortened amount of writing time can cause lower quality work.
Then there’s the “P” word. PROCRASTINATION! I’m guilty of it, are you? I’ve heard of many an author waiting until the last month before the deadline to write the contracted book. The publisher allotted the author 6 months to a year (typically) to write the book, but the author didn’t start until the last minute. Imagine what would happen if the author got sick during that month! Life happens, and it seems to “happen” all the more when you procrastinate. So, while writing on a deadline can affect the quality of an author’s work, procrastination always results in a rush job.
My advice to you: When writing on a deadline, set up a word count goal for each day or week and stick to it. Also leave a little time toward the end for feedback and revision. You owe it to your reader, your publisher and yourself to do your best!