By Christopher Wright
I love to read but writing is an endeavor not for the faint of heart. It requires creativity and persistence. It’s hard work. And often people don’t seem to appreciate your work. J.K. Rowling, the creator of the Harry Potter series, was rejected by 12 publishing houses, yet she soldiered on.
Today with electronic publishing it’s much easier to get self-published. But just getting published by a self-publishing press or electronic press is no guarantee of success. The digital or e-book press is saturated and many authors find themselves doing an extraordinary amount of marketing.
The Orange County Public Libraries webpage gives prospective authors the following advice on marketing their book to the libraries:
“The best way to bring your book to our attention is through reviews. A positive review in one or more of the library review journals, such as library journal, school library journal (for children’s books), Kirkus, Booklist, Publisher’s Weekly, or in the LA Times Sunday book review section will give your book an excellent chance of being bought by OC Public Libraries (and other public libraries as well).”
That is easier said than done, though.
Dana Point Library will be hosting a 90-minute presentation about writing on Friday, July 24 at 11 a.m. entitled, “Writing a Book: Publishing and Marketing, Myths and Truths,” presented by author Meadow Griffin. Her website is www.legendsoferin.com. Griffin will discuss a variety of issues and answer questions. She will tell you how to find an editor, what houses and agents are looking for, fraud alerts, and how to market your book. If you think you will become rich being an author think again. However, the reward is not financial but something intangible –the satisfaction that comes with creating something.
If you need help with the creative process there are scores of resources to turn to. The city of Dana Point in its quarterly Community News pamphlet routinely offers classes in writing. The summer edition on page 18 under special interest, lists two classes—one on life stories with Linda Berkshire as instructor, the other on writing novels, short stories and nonfiction with instructor Sam McCarver. These courses have fees and meet at the Dana Point Community Center at 34052 Del Obispo St. You can find out more on the city website at www.danapoint.org. From the home page, click on “city government,” “recreation” and then “recreation programs.”
People of all ages are writing now. A few years ago in our Meet the Author lecture series we met a local teenager who had published a book. Seniors, too, find time now to put pen to paper, or should I say fingers to the keyboard. Among them is Jean Harter of San Clemente, who recently wrote a children’s book that is available on Amazon, The Story of Kurley and the Knoodlebugs: A Movie Musical Script.
So if you have that book inside of you, fear not. Today it’s much easier to get it into print. The next time you are in the library or a coffee shop, take note of all the people typing on their keyboards. One of them might be the next J. K. Rowling.
For more information about locations and upcoming events across the Orange County Public Libraries system, visit the website at www.ocpl.org. The site also provides access to online databases, digital copies of popular magazines, pdf copies of historical sheet music, eBooks, audiobooks, jobseeker resources and more.
Chris Wright is not sure if he lives to read or if he reads to live. He has been a public librarian with the OC Public Libraries since 2006 and currently works at the Dana Point branch.