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So You Want to Be a Writer?
© 2003 by Robyn Amos
This article may not be reprinted or distributed without the author's permission.


What happens after you decide that you want to be a writer? I remember that first moment when I made the decision to actually do it. It was a life changing event because I was supposed to be taking the Psychology portion of my GRE exams for graduate school. It was Homecoming my first year out of college, and all my friends were puzzled when I showed up at the football game when they knew I should be sitting behind a desk, pencil in hand, filling in tiny circles. I looked into their worried faces and said, "I'm going to write a book."

They stared back at me in confusion. I'd said I was going to write a book, but what they'd heard was: The pressure of being out of college and working at job with no future has gotten to me and I've forgotten that I wasn't an English major and that I've spent four years preparing to be a psychologist.

They all thought I was crazy, but when I thought about the jobs that would be available to me when I left graduate school with that Ph.D. in Psychology as I'd always planned, I mentally cringed. I knew I wouldn't be happy. I asked myself, what would make me happy? If I could do anything in the world, what would it be? The answer is obvious. I wanted to write the kinds of books I'd always loved to read. I wanted to be a writer. So I did it. While I was still young enough to be poor and foolish enough to start all over, I did it.

What happened? I sold the first book I ever wrote three months after completing it.

It wasn't at all overnight. The Fall of 1993 I decided to become a writer. The Fall of 1994 I actually began to write. The Fall of 1995 I was offered my first book contract. The Fall of 1997 I will see my first book in print. Since then I've made five more sales. The following tips helped me in this long but rewarding process of becoming a writer.


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