Monday, April 15, 2013

First Draft Complete & Now Thinking On Next Steps

I finished the first draft of the book over the weekend. It came out to just over 65,000 words as it stands right now, which is perfectly fine for me. The whole idea going into it was that the book would be as long as the book would take. Most novels are suggested to be between 50-75k words minimum. Once I broke the 50k mark I was fine.
Now comes the hard part- editing. I've never been a great editor of my own work. I'm lucky in that I have a bunch of friends who are reading the book for me and who will hopefully help me find all the stupid mistakes. I'm going to have to read it too and fix all the words and sentences that got gobbeldy-gooked up going from my brain to my fingers to the page.
There's also the matter of publishing. I didn't write the book so that it sits on my computer, never to be seen by human eyes. I'm investigating different ways of getting it out there into the world. I've got a friend who self-published her own book and it seems to be doing very well. I'm looking into literary agents too. Right now I'm leaning towards the self-publishing route. I don't know. I'm torn between wanting to get it out there as soon as possible and wanting to feel like a real author, with an agent and an actual publisher and all that jazz. The punk rock DIY side of me is strongly pulled towards self-publishing.
Much like getting into teaching, I didn't write the book for the money. I wrote it to get my ideas into the world. I wrote it because I believe I've got things to say about teaching that can help people. I say it in the book, I don't think my way is The Best Way, but I do think it's a Damn Good Way. So I want to get it out there in a way that gets to the most people possible.
The thing is, I get the feeling book publishing is going to go the way of music distribution soon. It's getting very easy to release something as an e-book, market it yourself, put it on amazon, and sell that thing. I don't want He's the Weird Teacher to exist solely as an e-book, I want pages to hold and smell and sign and mail, but there's way to do that too. Kindle, Nook, and the like are going to revolutionize book sales much like mp3 players destroyed/are destroying the music industry.
I'll probably end up polishing a few chapters up real nice and emailing them out to an agent or two with a query letter. Couldn't hurt, right? What will actually end up happening is still up in the air.
As it stands, the editing is going to be the hard, painful part. I'm not great at it, but also not willing to pay a bunch of money to an editor. Counting on my skills and the skills of the wonderful readers I've enlisted. On the plus side, I've thought of cover art. No, you can't know about it yet. That's gotta have a big reveal! Drama!
Anyone know an agent or a publisher looking for a non-fiction book about teaching?

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