View Full Version : What mistakes did you make when you first started writing?

Catherine Bybee
February 29th, 2008, 12:45 PM
Tell me your experiences.
If you could start all over again what mistakes did you commonly make when you first started writing and what did you learn the most from those errors?

Shelley Munro
February 29th, 2008, 10:24 PM

I did a big long post and the board timed out so I lost the entire post.

My journey: I wrote for six years before receiving my first contract. 2004 was a good year since I sold my first book in January and sold another five really quickly. Since then I've continued to sell, challenging myself to learn new things with each book.

If I had my time over I would have submitted to epublishers a lot earlier. I spent almost six years trying to write for Harlequin. A lot of my friends write for Harlequin and I enjoy reading many of their lines but my writing doesn't fit. Once I realised this I started selling.


Shelley Munro
February 29th, 2008, 10:32 PM
I decided to split my post into two. The following are not mistakes but rather things I've learned.

1. Writing is a solitary endeavor. Find a writing group because no one understands the ups and downs of a writer's life as much as another writer. Join Romance Writers of America or if you can't afford that, check out online writer groups. Coffee Time has a writer's thread and one of my favorite places is Romance Divas. They're a fantastic group.

2. Writing involves a lot of waiting!! Even published writers have to wait. At present I'm waiting to hear back about four different projects. While you're waiting move onto the next project.

3. Keep hope in the mail - this relates to #2 above. I like to have several projects out with editors/agents/entered in contests then if I receive a rejection I still have several other "live" projects out and have "hope in the mail".

4. Writing contributes to bottom spread. Make sure you exercise and eat well.

5. Read widely. Part of writing is learning from other writers. By reading widely you learn and keep up with market trends at the same time. Analyse books. What works for you? What doesn't?


Catherine Bybee
March 1st, 2008, 12:46 AM
Wow Shelly,
Thanks for the feedback. I have joined RWA and have been to one local Chapter meeting and plan on attending more.
I like the 'Hope in the Mail.' part.
And bottom spread LOL damn isn't that the truth. It's hard to write sexy when you don't feel it. At least for me anyway.
I hope I'm on the right track and can join the ranks of the published soon. Thanks for the insight.


Shelley Munro
March 1st, 2008, 05:21 PM
You're very welcome, Catherine. If you have a chance definitely check out Romance Divas and join their forum. They are a great bunch of men and women and you'll pick up lots of hint and market info. They also have free workshops on a regular basis. Joining their forum is free.

If you have any other questions, feel free. I'll do my best to answer.


PS - the bottom spread always makes everyone laugh but unfortunately it's true, which is why I'm about to go for a walk!!

Catherine Bybee
March 1st, 2008, 08:41 PM
Where do I find romance divas? I've clicked around this site but it is evading me. Then again it took me a while to figure out how to post a new thread.

Thanks again for your info.

Shelley Munro
March 2nd, 2008, 07:57 PM
Romance Divas is at http://www.romancedivas.com

There are several links to the forum from the front page.