by Megan Haskell
My daughter started Kindergarten this year, and with “big girl school” comes homework. She’s actually excited about the concept, proud to be challenged to study at home on her own. She has always loved school, but now there’s a new level of responsibility and she’s rising to the challenge.
The other night, she turned to me from the kitchen table where she was completing her assigned worksheets — I was cooking dinner — and asked why I don’t have homework. I looked up from chopping vegetables with an incredulous expression.
The fact is, I’m always learning, always doing homework. After all, I work from home. Everything is homework. But the question made me pause and think about how much I’ve learned in ten years of writing and almost three years publishing.
Self-Directed Continuing Education
Continuing education is a critical part of becoming a successful author. Not only do you need to practice and improve your craft, you need to research and understand the business and industry. Even the most experienced writers have more to learn.
But I think now is an appropriate time to share the most valuable resources I’ve discovered. It’s a mix of craft, production, and marketing, but recommended reading for writers of all levels. If you haven’t already devoured these books, you should definitely check them out!
- The Art of War for Writers, by James Scott Bell
- The Emotion Thesaurus, by Angela Ackerman
- The First Five Pages, by Noah Lukeman
- How to Market a Book, by Joanna Penn
- How to Write a Sizzling Synopsis, by Bryan Cohen
- Let’s Get Digital, by David Gaughran
- Let’s Get Visible, by David Gaughran
- Mastering the Craft of Storytelling, by Ray Rhamey
- Successful Self-Publishing, by Joanna Penn
- Take Off Your Pants!: Outline Your Books for Faster, Better Writing, by Libbie Hawker
- Writing Active Setting, by Mary Buckham
- The Writing Productivity Bundle, by Monica Leonelle (Includes: Write Better, Faster; 8-Minute Writing Habit; and, Dictate Your Book)
- 5 Steps to Self-Publishing for Love or Money, by S.K. Quinn
- 10 Step Self-Publishing Bootcamp, by S.K. Quinn
Aspiring to Author
And here’s a new one to add to your list, Aspiring to Author: A Guide for Your Publishing Career, by Greta Boris and Megan Haskell!
Inspired by the O.C. Writers community and our work on this blog, Greta and I wrote Aspiring to Author to help writers make the transition from hobbyist to professional, and authors move from one publication path to another.
Aspiring to Author will help you:
- Discover your publishing personality
- Understand the pros and cons of each publishing path
- Develop personal goals that will lead to publication
- Build your author platform
- Navigate basic marketing options
The book is now available on Amazon, or if you’ll be attending the Southern California Writers’ Conference this weekend (September 22-24), you can pick up your book at the Mysterious Galaxy pop-up bookstore, and we’ll be thrilled to sign it for you!
What other resources have you found most valuable in your writing career? What books should I include in my homework? Share them in the comments!
Legend has it, I was born with a book in my hands. Thirty-ish years later, I’m a stay-at-home-mom who prefers a good story over doing the dishes. Only now, I’m building my own fantasy worlds! I’m the Award-Winning author of the Amazon bestselling series,The Sanyare Chronicles, co-author of Aspiring to Author: A Guide for Your Publishing Career, and Program Director of O.C. Writers. You can find me on my website at www.meganhaskell.com, Facebook, and Twitter.
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