Today Shannon Duffy co-author of, Stormy Knight Prom Queen of the Undead, is guest blogging about her experiences co-authoring a book.
One Book Two Names Or Two Heads Are Better Than One
By Shannon Duffy
As most any writer can attest to, it can be tough writing a novel. Sure, you have the general idea and concept, but all the stuff that goes in between is equally important. Hitting a road block or three is common, but why make it hard on yourself when you don’t have to?
Enter fellow writer from stage left! Get a writing buddy and tackle the novel together. Every writer has their own strengths and weaknesses, so it’s important to match up with someone that compliments what you already can bring to the table as far as skill set.
The benefits are plenty. Your workload is cut in half. You have a partner in your court to motivate you when you hit a road block and also someone that knows the characters just as well as you do. You also have someone else to help with editing and promotion when the book comes out.
Modern technology makes teaming up with a writing buddy a cinch. If you have a general concept of what you want to write, ask around in the writing forums that you frequent if anyone would be interested in teaming up with you.
Thanks to Skype and other online video conference programs, you can meet face to face as often as needed, even if the two of you live on opposite coasts. Skype is a great tool for brainstorming sessions. You can talk out the ideas in real time and make the process so much simpler than corresponding through email.
Once you have a writing partner, decide on your writing plan of action. Do either of you have other projects at the forefront that you’ll also be working on separately, or can the two of you give full attention to your shared project? Who writes what? Which of you are better at editing? Which is better at promotion?
Be open with your writing partner from the get-go about story ideas and character development so that the two of you can stay on the same train of thought. After all, it wouldn’t fare well for either of you if you had a character named Sam, but you were developing the character as a boy and your writing partner developed Sam as a girl. Communication is key.
When you sign with a publisher, you do need to take into account that the publisher generally isn’t going to double the pay they dish out, so you’ll receive half the amount of pay you would if you were to go at it solo. But, I think it’s a fair trade considering two authors are also doing the work as a solo writer. Good luck and keep writing!
Shannon Duffy www.ShannonMarieDuffy.com is the co-author of the YA book, Stormy Knight: Prom Queen of the Undead (May 2011 – Blue Leaf Publications) available through major booksellers nationwide in both paperback and e-book.