Isobelle Carmody answers writing advice questions on Facebook



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Some of you would have already seen Isobelle Carmody's post yesterday on her Facebook wall where she answered four writing and publishing questions, but for those of you who haven't:

Some of you would have already seen Isobelle Carmody's post yesterday on her Facebook wall where she answered four writing and publishing questions, but for those of you who haven't:

[hr][/hr]1) At what point should you take your manuscript to an editor? Do you have to be completely finished, and as completed as you can make it, or does getting an editor involved early on, while you're still in the first few drafts, have any merit? I don’t really think about the editor. I think about sending it off to a publisher when I have finished it as best I can, even if I know it is not perfect or suspect there is more to be done. I know it will go to an editor and whether they are good or bad, the mere fact of sending ot off and imagining other eyes looking at it will allow me some distance so that when I come back to it, with editors notes to guide me or a rejection to spur me on, I will read with fresh eyes. But of course you have to differentiate between getting a bit stale, reaching a point where you need to do some more thinking or actually coming to the end of that round- it gets easier to see which is which, but not easier to write a book. Not if each one takes you to new territory. 2) Is it worth waiting until you can try and get a 'big' publisher involved, or are the 'little' publishers work just as well? What methods did you use to get your first book published? I knew nothing about publishers and for a long time I didn’t think about them at all. I was just focused on writing and loving words and being lost in my world. When I did think of publishers, I just looked at who had published books I liked, getting addresses from inside them and making a list so I would have another ready when I got rejected. 3) Do you need an agent for your first book? Or can you wait until you're a little bit better known? I think you can get an agent at whatever point you need one. But if you get one to start, they will shape the process and get you to a publisher, if that is possible. If you get them deeper into your career, you are looking for someone who can negotiate and/or get you the things you now know enough to want to see in a contract. That said, I don’t have an agent. 4) How do you walk the line between a novel that asks and answers so many really poignant questions, and a novel that preaches? I would one day like to write a novel as utterly compelling and moving as your Legendsong series, so I'd love to know more about how you created it. I think you answer your own question. The key is to ask yourself questions and pursue the answers honestly through your narrative, whether it be your Own Life you are writing about or Dragons on Mars. Not to think you have the answers and write in order to tell that wisdom to your audience. That is being a guru or a God. It is important not to confuse these two things with being a writer. [hr][/hr]Very interesting insights! The original post can be found here on Facebook.



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