17 June 2007

Women's National Book Association San Francisco

At an event hosted by the Women's National Book Association San Francisco yesterday, I had an "aha" moment. At first, I hesitated. The last big "aha" moment was when I realized how many writers struggle with plot. Since I had spent 12 years studying about how the dramatic action works with character development to create a compelling story, I set out to help other writers find their plots and experience the freedom of structure. And, my life was transformed.

"Aha" moment Number Two feels as broad and universal. Honing writing skiils and learning about the craft of writing is only one half of the whole of being a writer. Finding a marketplace and readership is the other half. Yes, even you who are beginning a project. Yes, even you who are almost finished. Yes, even you who have already published.

Yesterday, writers were hungry to know more about this mysterious other half -- the shadow side of creating art, the side that involves money and sales figures and promotion and more. One of my fellow panelist spoke of being blindsided by the marketing aspect of helping the project she had so deligently crafted get a fair shake in a marketplace of shorter and shorter lifespans for books.

I teach one element of the craft of writing. Sure, plot is critical. Without dramatic action, character development, and making sense you have nothing but potential.

With a great book and a good understanding of what the next step involves, you'll find the readership you dream of.

Yes, even you who are still working on plot.

Learn about both sides.