This past Saturday I spent the day at the Ohioana Book Festival. It was my second year at the event, so I had a more of an idea what to expect.
I arrived just before ten to set up my little table. We were in a different building this year, but that turned out to be a good thing. There was more room, and everything was laid out a lot better than it was last year.
After getting checked in, I had a little time to breath before my author panel. There were five of us on the panel and it turned out to be a really great experience. Roughly thirty people showed up to hear us speak and asked a decent amount of questions, so much so that was actually ran out of time.
One thing I learned about Ohioana from participating last year is that while you may have your books for sale at the event, that's not what it's about. Ohioana is about celebrating authors, both published and aspiring. Throughout the day, I had several people come up to me who had listened to the panel discussion that morning and wanted to ask more questions. One has notebook after notebook full of information, but can't seem to take the next step. Another was asking about his son who has written several stories and dreams of becoming a published author.
I was lucky enough sit near some other really great ladies. One has been writing for years and is also going to be at the Lori Foster event in Cincinnati I'll be attending June 1st and 2nd. And beside me was an English professor who'd just published her first novel. The three of us were on the same author panel and we all shared the same message with those aspiring authors...
There is no one right way to write.
I think too many assume that you have to follow a certain program in order to write a novel and get it published. The three of us were proof that wasn't the case. The English professor doesn't start writing until she has everything plotted out and in a detailed diagram. Me, I'm a seat of your pants kind of writer. I get a general idea in my head of what I want to write and go for it. The third author fell in the middle. She does a general outline, and then lets her characters lead the way. See. No one right way.
Do you write? What method works best for you?