Blogging has been a weekly struggle as of late ... but I'm hoping now that my book is on its way and out of my hands, finally ... I can move on down the road and get things done.
But I'm tired, I want to crawl back into bed, and sometimes this blogging site moves as slow as dial-up! I just want to lie on a beach somewhere ... hmmm. Whining aside, I'm going to tackle my next question asked to me by writers. They ask it timidly, as if they don't want to hear the answer.
How perfect does my writing really have to be to land a book deal? In just one area or all of them? What kind of help can I really expect from an agent or editor?
The answer is easy for me, and should be a no-brainer to every writer out there. It has to be damn perfect. As perfect as you can get it. You better know your grammar, punctuation, and keep that dictionary close by. But besides that, you need to have a good basic knowledge in the craft of writing. Sure, you can hire an editor, and join a critique group ... but I hear so many people say, "I think I'll write a book." Not that easy, folks. Art is a craft like anything else. As much as one studies painting, or sculpture, or photography ... a writer must study the craft of composing words to create articles, memoirs, novels, short stories ... you get it ... it's a craft. The human mind has been so conditioned to writing for school, or business writing, or letters to Aunt Josephine, that we automatically think we can write a book.
Cracks me up.
It's why people hire ghostwriters. They don't want to take the time, usually, to worry about the structure of their story.
But without knowing the craft, you can submit to agents and editors until you're purple in the face, and you'll get nowhere. Don't expect much help from them either. They haven't the time. It's a different world we live in. You may get constructive criticism if you're lucky, in the form of a carefully crafted letter, or in a class at a writing conference, but all in all - editors and agents are in the business to make money. Not to teach. Bottom line.
So take classes, GO to writing conferences, join a writing group/critique group, network with other writers ... and the best thing to teach you the craft of writing is.... READ.
That's my advice on being perfect in your writing. But as we know, nobody truly is ... perfect. Sometimes, it's a matter of opinion, I think. Ah, but in the end ... it's the public that decides - your readers.
In the meantime ... we keep on trying. Never give up. Not for a second.
Blessings to you and yours.