I’m Considering Writing a Book

This is just a raw idea in my head, and knowing my attention span (that of a gnat), the idea will probably fall by the wayside, but…

I was thinking of writing a book about a journey – my journey.

Most readers here know that I’m an immigrant. I came to the United States when I was 8 years old with my parents – a Jewish refugee from the Soviet Union. I’ve made many discoveries on the way. Some of them are detailed here on the blog, and some of them in my previous writings. But I’ve never stopped examined my mental journey from my childhood in the former USSR to the present. I’ve never detailed the evolution of who I was then to who I am now.

It’s as much a mental journey, as it is a physical one, so I had this idea of writing it down and publishing it as a book, entitled “The Journey.”

I have no idea if it’s something I need to pitch to an actual publisher.

I wouldn’t know how to go about it if I did.

This is an idea in its infancy, so I’m still mulling it over in my head.

However, if anyone has any advice about how best to accomplish this, or about what publisher to approach, do toss your ideas into the comments.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

 

21 responses

  1. I’d read it.

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  2. I know Irish Dragon is an author. Perhaps asking his advice would help. All I know is I would love reading itπŸ™‚

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    1. I didn’t know that. Might be worth asking some advice there. Hmmmmm. Thanks! I actually know a few authors, but one is military sci-fi, so it’s a different type of publisher and a different type of process… I think… The other is self-published, and the third… Hmmmm – might be worth asking as well.

      Thanks!

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      1. Ask them ALL!! Everyone’s experiences will be different, and that will help you construct a more viable planπŸ™‚

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  3. This site may help with the manuscript.

    http://www.shunn.net/format/

    If you have a publisher in mind, check their website for submission guidelines.

    I’ve never published anything, so my advice may not be the best, but from my research, the chances of acceptance are improved with interesting letters of introduction, with a well written manuscript. They get thousands of submissions and cull those that don’t catch their eye.

    One thing I did note in my research is the avoidance of informing a publisher it’s your first effort. I’m guessing the reason is they use that as one of their first culling points and you never get a chance.

    Self-publishing is becoming more prevalent, but it’s usually an e-book. To get it into hard copy means a book publisher will need a document in the format they can manipulate, such as Microsoft Word.

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    1. Thanks, Jess. I’ll check it out.

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  4. “and knowing my attention span (that of a gnat)”

    What was this post about now?πŸ˜‰

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    1. Look! Bright, shiny object!πŸ™‚

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  5. Considering your past history, I would be interested in reading it. But, if you do write the book, I hope you finish it before I keel over. I’m not a young man anymore.πŸ˜‰

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  6. I’d buy it, with some extras to be handed out as gifts!

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  7. This is a great idea Nicki! If I can help, let me know.

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  8. I’d read it, too, Nicki. I’ve been working on one of my own for some years now. From extreme poverty, to lower middle class, to military service (8 years) to cop, to assistant city manager, to college teacher, to oil and gas landman. An odd journey of my own.

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  9. You’re right about the mental journey. It feels good when you appreciate where you come from. I’m Irish on my mother’s side and Hungarian/Jewish on my father’s. They all came through Ellis Island and I’m very proud of both sides of my heritage. I also have a fine appreciation of what American Freedoms have meant for the welfare of my family.

    The Jewish side came here when someone burned down great granddad’s business and the Irish side when my Irish grandfather looked at Ireland in 1920 and decided there wasn’t enough of a good future for his newborn daughter, my mother.

    The only problem I have, is that I can’t decide if I have Jewish brains and an Irish temper or Irish brains and a Jewish temper.

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  10. About 18 years ago, I reconnected to some cousins, descendants of my grandfather’s siblings who remained in the former Soviet Union after my grandfather came to America alone at age 15. Stalin and all that necessitated that my grandfather break all contact during the 1930’s. My father told me that they had received some letters asking for money for my grandfather’s sister to get married, that he broke open his piggy bank, and that nothing further was heard from them — until I fortuitously found a second cousin on the Internet in the mid 1990’s. [I recently found those letters from Russia while going through my Dad’s papers shortly after he died.].

    Since that time, having had one degree of contact or another with various cousins (with the usual language barriers), I have wondered not so much about my grandfather’s physical journey (the ship manifest from Ellis Island is available on the Internet), but about his mental and emotional transition from Russian to American. And my grandfather is long gone and can no longer tell me anything.

    Even if you never get it to publication, please do write something down about your mental/emotional journey. Your grandchildren, if not your children, will one day need to know your story.

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  11. Nicki – Your book would be classified as a memoir. Memoirs have been on trend lately, but even so, write it for yourself first and then market the first chapter and outline to a publisher or an agent. many publishers don’t want to deal with un-agented authors, (another culling point). Also, publishers are looking for authors with their own platforms, such as your blog and other social media, because they do not want to waste their budgets marketing an unknown author. In your cover letter to agent or publisher, list all pertinent published work, include your blog in that list. When they look at your writing resume, they will know how much you have (or have not) had published. Go to the library and get the current writer’s guide and then look to see who is publishing memoirs. Research your target publishers so you don’t market to a publisher that does not produce your genre – that is definitely a rookie mistake. be prepared to explain to the agent or publisher why you are a good fit for them and they for you. Read a few writing articles and magazines (Writers Digest and The Writer are good ones) to get good and current tips about the market for memoirs and who is looking for them. With everyone cutting back and also online and electronic publishing, it is getting more and more difficult to get noticed and published these days. The less experience you have, the more beneficial it is to market a finished product (that they can edit, of course). I haven’t had anything published lately or been to a writer’s conference in several years, so I’m kind of rusty.

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    1. Good idea, Karen! Thanks for that!

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  12. P.S. I would read it. πŸ™‚

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  13. I’m a self published author, both in electronic format and print. Amazon has a print-to-order service called CreateSpace. If you go the self-publishing route, start there. It will walk you through the steps of getting an ISBN (even assigns one for free), classifying the book, and will format it for you. Then, when that’s done, it asks if you also want to publish on Kindle, and boots you over to that process.

    It’s a pretty simple and easy process. The most difficult thing is marketing yourself when you have a two year old and four year old, and you can’t exactly afford to get many of your own books to peddle around.

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    1. Hmmmmm…. that sounds like a good plan. How expensive is it?

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    2. It’s free. No cost to you until you order copies of your book, unless you opt for the extended distribution ($25).

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      1. Wow! That sounds pretty awesome! Thank you for the info.

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