Monday, 29 July 2013

Six of the most important possessions an author needs

To produce anything in this world, you need something to produce it with. While being an author I have often been told that all I need is my laptop and fingers. Yet during my time writing and about to release my second book, Entrapment, I’ve come to find there are so many ‘items’ in the world that are important to my writing. Without some of these of 'possessions' I wouldn’t be able to write full stop; with others they make more productive. So here is a list of six possessions (and I use that term loosely) that authors need to be successful.

1.    A computer

Yes it is top of the list and it probably isn’t any surprise as to why. Without the computer we simply couldn’t publish our work. No computer, no uploading it KDP or marketing it through Twitter and Facebook. I know that it sounds pretty silly, but nowadays if you want to be a writer you need a computer.

2.    A notebook (and pen)

Considering point 1, this seems a little redundant. But a lot of my ideas start out as scribbles on a page before moving on to a handwritten outline and I am writing the first draft of one book on paper first. Why? Because sometimes the physical sensation of writing feels like it is right. However authors should be aware that a notebook and pen are useful when out and about. It’s good for writing ideas that come to you while out and about and it is great for writing short paragraphs while commuting from home to work. I think the pen and paper will always be around and rightly so.

3.    A good bed

Sometimes as authors we put out bodies through a lot. I wake at 5 am and sometimes I do not go to sleep until midnight (or later). To cope I need a good solid few hours sleep and for that I need a good bed. It is the same for every author. If you want to perform the next day, getting a good night’s sleep is critical and therefore a bed is important.

4.    A website

A website is important to an author. From there you can advertise you books, other services and really push your brand across the internet. A website acts like a 24 hour shop front which you can communicate with your readers without having to be there. However without a website you may only use social media – which can get a little spammy and harm your reputation.

5.    Rewards

Rewards are important. You need something to aim for and a reason to get there if you are going to have drive to achieve it. When I started freelance writing this month my wife told me I could have a Chinese meal out if I earned £100. I actually reduced this to a Chinese takeaway but I agreed. Within 1 week I smashed this goal (meaning I need to set better goals – see this post by me). I've now waivered that reward and am instead taking my wife out for a day filled with surprise activities and a good meal out – to say thank you but also because I need the reward to remind me of why I am working so hard.

6.    A support network

The biggest asset any author can have is the support network they have around them. Friends and family are so important at lifting our spirits when we are down; bringing us down to earth when we get carried away and bringing us cups of tea when we need it most. I could not be a writer without my family and friends. And it isn’t just the ones I have who live near me. All my friends who I have met online are an excellent support and without them I would not be where I am today. So a big thank you for those who are there for me when I need it.

If you have any more examples please let us know in the comments below.

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