The writer as consumer

We’ve all been bitten by it — the desire to get into print, to be successful, to catch the golden ring. It’s a drive that can become so compelling that we lose track of common sense and those little voices that say, “Watch out!”

For writers, this drive can lead us to unwittingly make pacts with devils: unsavory characters who flit about the edges of decency and prey upon the inexperienced in any business setting. It’s important to remember that you, as a writer, are also a consumer.

In my work as a freelance editor, I’m actually bothered at how trusting some clients can be. It’s unnerving when they call and hire me without vetting me in some way, or when a client says he or she has already signed a contract and put hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars into a dubious publisher’s hands. Or that they’ve worked with an agent who charged them a reading fee or who’s sat on their manuscript for years.

There are five areas in which writers are particularly vulnerable: writing, agenting, marketing, publishing, and contests. Here’s a look at what writers need.

Writing help
A good writer is usually backed up by a host of people (just check out any book’s acknowledgments). Ranging from a writing group or spouse to friends, in-laws, children, colleagues, these people give support and feedback. But at some point, a writer might decide to engage professional help in the form of a writing coach or editor. But how to choose one?

Read the rest of The Loft Literary Center’s article here.

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