To do my job properly, I’m going to need something from you, depending on what exactly you want.
Stage one: your own requirements
This is the free part of the process.
- “I have an idea for a novel.”
Fiction is about much more than an idea. Your project needs a theme, a plot, subplots, characters. Something needs to happen to keep the reader interested. Ideally, a work of fiction should be about the most important thing that has happened to the main character at that point in their life. I can help you work these things out. Tell me what you have so far – confidentiality guaranteed – and we can take it from there.
- “I think a great book could be written on [a subject close to my heart].”
I’ll assume you’re an expert in this area. I’m probably not. We can talk through your notes and research, and produce an outline for the finished product.
- “I would like my life story – or the story of part of my life – to be told.”
Tell me about yourself, and the areas and ups and downs of your life that you want to cover. I’ll come back with a proposed outline with which to proceed.
If none of that describes you exactly, then get in touch and we can go over what you do need.
Once we have everything sorted, I will give you a quote for the work, which may include further information gathering as well as the writing itself. If you want to proceed, we will sign a contract detailing what I am meant to be doing, timescales and payment, as well as guaranteeing things like confidentiality, copyright and indemnity. Depending on how long it is going to take, I may require part-payment in stages as well as on completion – I have to live. If you hope to reap financial rewards from this project and don’t mind sharing the glory, we can discuss making my fee an advance against future royalties.
The writing begins.
You also have to decide what you’re going to do with the completed article. You will probably have an idea of this before we begin. This can be incorporated into our agreement, or we can tackle it separately later.
- Send it to a publisher or an agent.
Publishers and agents generally have their own submission guidelines, each different with no one-size-fits-all approach. However, I can help prepare whatever may be needed.
This might be electronically, or on paper, or both. My exact involvement depends on what you have in mind, but I can advise and possibly help prepare the files. However, I’m not a marketing consultant so will bow out at the marketing stage, if there is one.