How does it feel to be unnoticed? How do you catch someone’s attention? Have you been in a situation where your name influences the future of your work? What should you do to keep yourself in momentum and never lose sight? From being unknown to a world-renowned author, Riley Sager discusses the things that work best for him.
Riley Sager is a former journalist, editor, and graphic designer turned into an award-winning author. As someone who tasted the bitterness of what means to be faded in obscurity, Riley Sager is a pseudonym brought into the world that changed his life from an unknown to a sought-after author.
Known for his work “Final Girls” applauded by the legend author, Stephen King, Riley is bound to take the world into a massive storm. In my talk with Riley, we dived into his arduous path to international success and the different aspects that an upstart author should understand. In this episode, you’ll learn…
Knowing your strengths and weaknesses when you start your journey as an author is a must, but never lose sight of knowing yourself. It is equally important to understand the undercurrents that surround you as you start your tumultuous path to publishing your first book.
There are hundreds of thousands of authors in the literary world and only an extremely small number of people are bound to be legends—immortalized in literary history. It starts from the title of your book, opting for a pen name or not, and knowing your purpose to understand the business behind publishing.
As an upstart, it is important to understand that publishing is a business. Many writers lose sight of that because their passion clouded their judgment or they were simply not prepared for the business aspect of it. Understand that a business thrives in the name of profit, and if you fail to understand that first-hand, there will never be a time for your book to shine to the world.
The thing that sets apart new authors to seasoned authors are not solely in experience but versatility, not in genres but character building. Your sex will not matter in achieving maximum relatability in character building. Regardless if you are a man or a woman, the thing that converges between the two is decision-making. You approach the characters through how they react to the given situation—they might be imperfect but they are strong. Find ways to help your audience understand why your characters came up with their decision—to achieve engagement and enlightenment.
Developing your foundation is the start to sailing, and understanding your purpose keeps you away from sinking. It is essential to set things straight right off the bat. What do you want to get out of this? Different answers lead to different paths and have their share of difficulty.
You might be doing it as a hobby or full-time, telling your story or being famous and rich, being mainstream and trendy, or be unique and deviate from the trend, and so much more. It is important to figure out what you want and try to go for it. Ultimately, ask yourself if you want to tell a story or sell books.
Nobody is perfect and a journey towards greatness is filled with challenges and mistakes refined and improved over time. As an upstart author, it is important to ask questions. Never be afraid or embarrassed to tell that you do not know something—they assume you know what you need to know. Next, understand your market better—know the difficulty of finding an audience.
Getting the word out and keeping the hype up will be hard, therefore, you need to befriend as many writers as you can. Try to put yourself out there. Be genuine, because if you do, authors will help you further down the road.
Writing a story will never be easy. The thought, process, effort, and time that go into it are a sight to behold. But despite the demand it takes to write a single book, authors still have the burning passion and unwavering will to tread the path. Just like Riley: “I am hard on myself, and because of that it makes my book better.”
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