M. V. Marguerite

18 Year Old Author

“I think all writing is a disease. You can’t stop it.”

—William Carlos Williams



The Process

This page is for you who are interested in the resources I used in my writing and publishing process. It doesn't, however, include the physiological aid I sought during my various stages of writer's block.  

  1. Actually writing: Initially, it was in a notebook my parents got me for my birthday. When my hand began to cramp, I typed it up on our iPad using Pages. For Christmas a couple of years later I got a laptop, so I switched to Microsoft Word, but now I use Google Docs so it can synchronize with all my devices (and if my laptop get's destroyed, I don't have to panic over losing my work: been there, done that). But if I'm out and about and I get a sudden inspiration, it doesn't matter what I write on. Napkins, tissues. Your forehead. 
  2. Editing: Remember my "filthy rich" dream? Turns out I had to pay an editor to edit my manuscript. Who would have thought, right? Anyway, I ended up going with a company called Angel Editing (but I don't think it exists anymore, because my bookmark to their website doesn't work) and the editing took about five weeks. The editors I worked with were all very polite and efficient. All communications were done by email, which was wonderful because I don't like talking to people (there's a reason I like to write). 
  3. Cover Design: Aside from writing, this was probably my favorite part of the process. I found a website called 99 Designs, which is an online community for designers seeking jobs and people seeking designers. As a person seeking a designer, all I had to do was make an account and "launch a contest" with a description of what kind of cover I wanted and the amount of money I would give the winner. Any designer from the 99 Designs community could join my contest and submit a design. During a two week period I sorted through over two hundred entries and chose my favorite cover before awarding the money I promised to the winner. After a couple of more days we both signed a contract that said he got the money and I got the cover, and that neither of us were going to sue each other. Voilà! 
  4. Publishing: As the title of this page states, I did not traditionally publish (TP): I self published (SP). The basic difference between TP and SP is that for TP, you send them your book, and if they like it, they provide the funds for distribution and marketing. In SP, you send your book to a publishing service company and pay for the services. So why did I self publish? Well, at the time, the possibility of my beautiful little baby being rejected by an intimidating publishing house put a downer on my "filthy rich" dream, and I'd heard horror stories of novels taking years to go through the slush pile on a publisher's desk, just to accidentally fall to the floor and be lost forever. I had neither the time nor patience for that. So I used a publishing service provider called Xlibris, and I have no regrets. My several publishing consultants were always easily reachable (maybe even a little too much), and I felt in control of every step of the process (I'm told that's not possible in TP). I have to make clear, though, that in SP, you have to be the working force behind your book. Since companies like Xlibris' salaries don't depend on how many books are sold, their effort ends after the release, while big publishing houses make money off your royalties, so they want your book to go big (so do I).