What I Learned While Writing My Book, Write Like You Mean It
While watching a few author interviews several years ago, I couldn't help but marvel at how smooth the conversations were. It didn't matter what question was asked or which random direction the discussion went. They knew every inch of their book like the back of their hand.
They recited specific passages from memory – as if they had the book open in front of them.
They didn't stutter, stammer, or trip themselves up out of sheer nervousness.
How could this be? Well ... beyond the obvious fact that they wrote the book, they had likely read the darn thing several dozen times. They wrote it, re-wrote it, agonized over certain word choices, and, yes, strove for perfection at every stage of the editing process.
Naturally, they had the whole thing memorized by the time it was published.
None of this dawned on me until my book, Write Like You Mean It: Mastering Your Passion For The Written Word, was finally published in September. I was getting invited on writer podcasts and interviewed for newspaper articles. I spoke at author events in front of independent book publishers, and I was peddling copies of my book at networking events.
I quickly realized how well I knew my own book – just like the authors who came before me knew theirs. From the time I first sat down to write in January 2020 to publication in late 2021, I carefully pored over every sentence in that book.
I can still recite it with ease.
This is one of many valuable lessons I learned while writing my book, Write Like You Mean It. And I couldn't be more appreciative of the experience. As I said in my book:
Those who read those earlier iterations will tell you this final version is completely different in terms of size, scope, purpose, flow, and functionality. It's clearer. It's more concise. The rough edges have been smoothed out. Additional chapters were added to make sure I was speaking to all writers. It was hard work – harder than I ever imagined. But I'm proud. I'm proud because not only does this represent my passion for the written word, but it's a perfect metaphor for who we all are as writers. When you're just starting out, and even as you get twenty or thirty years down the line, you think you've reached a point where you have it all figured out – just like I thought with this book. People tell you that you're good, you learn to decipher between what is and is not quality writing, and you push forward thinking that you've got it all under control. Then you realize through an epiphany or an editor clubbing you upside the head that you don't know near enough. Being a writer is a tedious, lifelong endeavor where there are always rough edges to smooth out. There's room to improve, and this book is proof of that. My hope is that the final version – although I still wish I could have written it better – makes you just as proud to be a writer as it makes me.
How can you get your hands on Write Like You Mean It?
This book is for writers of all experience levels, genres, and professional pursuits. Whether you’re a journalist, college writer, aspiring freelancer, or future novelist, this book is for you, so you too can Write Like You Mean It!
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*STEVE GAMEL is the President & Owner of Edit This, a writing and editing services company located in Denton, TX, and the author of Write Like You Mean It: Mastering Your Passion For The Written Word. Steve handles anything involving the written word. Give him a call today to help give your business a clear voice.