I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Guest

I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Guest »

I re-published my book, but I think it's still crappy, but when I look back at it, I don't know what to do to make it "better". And I'm trying to write a sequel to the first book, but nothing seems right and I feel like I hit a wall. What should I do? Thank all of you for your help and support.
David

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by David »

Have you had feedback from beta readers? Has the book been edited?
Claire

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Claire »

It seems like a bad idea to have something you consider ‘crappy’ out there, representing the best you can do. I can’t see how it can add anything positive - your name is your reputation, why would you want sub-par work to define it? Perhaps it wasn’t meant to be published in its current form. It sounds like you need to start again instead of trying to edit something that clearly isn’t working for you, but if you’re determined to stick with it, I’d suggest enlisting some beta readers with very specific questions that you’d like answered. Good luck.
Nick

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Nick »

I rely on my characters for ideas. I have them talk to one another in my head and see what they come up with. Am I bonkers ? Quite possibly
Ashley

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Ashley »

Not every book is meant to be published. I basically tossed my first 2 attempts, and have met several NY Times Best Selling authors that did the same (they actually gave my permission by sharing their experience). I was able to start my most recent failure from scratch using new characters, new positions for old characters, and a new central focus for the plot. Almost NOTHING remained the same, and I do not regret this in the slightest. There is absolutely ZERO shame in accepting a story just isn't working. In fact, one of the most consistent pieces of advice you'll get from prolific writers is "kill your darlings," meaning let go of the material that doesn't work, regardless of how attached you are to the piece.

I will 2nd what someone said above about not tarnishing your reputation with a book even YOU don't like. Your reputation will sell the book you eventually write, the one you're super proud to share, and I don't think it's a great idea to devote more time to a sub-par project that won't ADD to your catalog in a positive way.
Waltraud

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Waltraud »

If you are not really happy with the first one (don't call it crappy), writing a second part is maybe not the way to go, because just people who read the first one will read the second one and if they do not like the first one they will not buy the second one and you are trapped. 🙂

I would suggest to let the first one rest, maybe read some books on writing to get new input and to imagine your first book while reading the books on writing, getting aware of the "mistakes" and learn from it. Maybe not everything in this instructional books will fit your difficulties, just pick the ones that you think will help you make your writing better. If you need a recommendation, I really like the books from K.M. Weiland and "Wonderbook" from Jeff Vandermeer for a more allaround, fantasy approach.

And then I would suggest, let all of this settle and then write another book, something different maybe, but something completely new. Start over new. Maybe this helps you a bit.
Irene

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Irene »

At a similar place. People told me I couldn’t leave the first one hanging. I’ve tried to include too much in the second so I’m cutting parts to keep it simple or maybe it will just get tossed.
Dylan

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Dylan »

As the writer of the book, you will always be your biggest critic. Having third-party opinions from beta-readers or friends (ones that aren't afraid to call you on your mistakes) will help you polish your book as well as reinforcing the quality of your writing.
Kiefer

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Kiefer »

If you arent happy with the first and don't know where to go with a sequep, scrap it and try something new
Tiffany

Re: I don't know what to do to make my book "better"

Post by Tiffany »

I would unpublish and get 4-5 beta readers to read for you and answer specific questions about your concerns.
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