HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE YOU TO WRITE A BOOK?
Here’s the thing: you know how you start reading a book and after a few pages, you know if you’re going to finish it or if you’re already bored? And if you love it, then you read even faster?
Well, writing a book is like that. I’ve started writing books and put them down. I just wasn’t that into them, you know? Then I began writing the first Uncommon Cora book and I couldn’t wait to find out what happened. It took about 5 months to sketch out the plot and characters. Then another 5 months to write the first draft of the book. I sent it off and a publisher wrote back, saying I should add more to it, especially about Jimmy and the Instagram influencers who help Cora. That took me another 3 months because I had to find out what real influencers were like. Candace from themintedmama.com was super helpful and let me send her a list of questions. The publisher was clear that, even though I wrote fiction, some stuff had to be real. It’s hard to explain what you can make up and what you have to get right, but trust me, it makes sense when you’re in it.
Of course, a really long part is the fine-tuning which in writing is called editing. Editing feels like when you’re totally dying to read the last amazing chapter of a book but someone snatches it from you and starts reading it out loud instead. They keep stumbling over words and you want to pull out your hair (and theirs) and you only hang in because you really, really want to find out how it ends. But like, it’s sooo not your favourite part.
Writing time and editing time for me was about 14 months for the first book. The sequel takes a bit less since you’ve already gotten to know the characters. As for time to then have agents, publishers and their own editors read, fine-tune, contract, schedule, design covers, and so on, well in my limited experience, that takes anywhere from 16 months to well, I’ll let you know after my first book is on the shelf.