So You Wanna Be a Writer?

Since I got my first book deal, I’ve started getting questions from other people asking me how to get published. This is my advice to new writers who have completed a manuscript and aren’t sure what the next step to follow is.


Hi! Congrats on finishing a project! A lot of people want to be writers but don’t write. You’ve already taken that first step!

Next, decide if you want to self-publish or seek a publisher. Everyone has different thoughts and opinions on which way to go, but ultimately it’s up to you. Everyone’s path to publishing is different, and what works for one may not work for another. If you are interested in seeking out traditional publishing, a good place to start is the Writer’s Market book which lists agents, editors and publishers and tells you which ones would be interested in your genre.

Writers Market 2015

Canadian Writers Market 2015

Before signing a contract, make sure to check out the publisher or agent on sites like Preditors and Editors

If you are going to self-publish, I’d suggest a current book on self-publishing.

Then I’d advise you join a writers group in your area. Most of the stuff I learned about publishing and publishers who would be interested in my books was through members in my writing group. They can point you in the right direction and act as beta readers for your projects.

I’d also recommend going to writers conferences and workshops, and reading books on writing craft. I’ve been attending these since the 1990’s. I’ve met other writers, publishers, editors and agents at these things and have learned things I could never pick up from reading it in a book.

Robert J. Sawyer has a great blog post for new writers and mentions various conferences and workshops on his site from time to time. Rather than plagiarizing his advice for new writers, I figured I’d recommend it in my post 🙂

Lastly I’d suggest setting up a web site and some social media accounts related to the project and your author brand. Some publishers look at that to determine if you could build your own readership.

That’s what I can advise in a nutshell.

Good luck!

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