Second Book Success: better writing or business savvy?

Many debut writers find success through a second book.

On my first book still, this is a premature post.

Adding the finishing touches to my first project, I’m not saddened by the prospect of this wrapped-up chapter of my writing journey, more frightened by the next.

I thought about why that is. I’ve been researching MSWLs and submission guidelines, dos, don’ts and don’t you dares.

And I wondered, how much success can we account to our writing improvements and how much is down to our awareness?

Quick example. You write a paranormal romance, inspired by Twilight.

On a side note here . . .It has been said that many writers and readers are inspired by this series. But if you said your book was to sit next to it on a bookshelf? Well, then your agent/publisher may not be the Edward to your Bella. Generalisation or reality?

So, you write a paranormal romance.

You research agents.

And when you do, you might find it’s a difficult sell.

After another 100 to 200 queries, would you write another paranormal romance? No vamps or werewolves wanted here . . . would this be your next MS??

Maybe you study what is selling, the dreaded ‘writing to a trend.’ Or maybe you stick to what you love and the love bleeds through, eventually bleeding all over an agent to the point they say, er, let’s clean this up and sell it!

But in the end, we become more ‘business intelligent’ as writers. It may be hard to separate that knowledge from improving as a writer. . . but in the scheme of things, when publishing is a tight corner to turn, is it bad to be business savvy?

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