How Does Writing a Book with Two Authors Work? | Liz & Lisa of Chick Lit is Not Dead Explain
Saturday has always been my favorite day of the week. In school it meant gymnastics and trampolining all day, in college it meant a lie in. In my 20’s it has meant allowing myself to veer from my usual schedule, which I have a hard time allowing myself to do (some sort of OCD). Now my Saturdays allow me some ‘me’ time – these days that means reading, writing and generally indulging in some good old fashioned fun – friends, food and family. What do you love to do on a Saturday?
Today’s post comes from two of my favorite writing BFF’s – Liz and Lisa of ChickLitisNotDead.com who are keeping Chick Lit well and truly alive. (Thank goodness for that.)These two have been friends since college, co-run a blog, and have recently released their second book which they scribed together. The concept blows my mind. Below, the two of them – together, naturally – explain how writing a book together works.
“Writing with your BFF can have a lot of advantages. She knows not to email you before your Starbucks run and you know that she loves to put winking emoticons at the end of every email.”
We’ve had a blast writing our blog (Chick Lit Is Not Dead) and two books together (our latest, The D Word, just came out this summer!) But writing with anyone, let alone someone who knows you better than you know yourself can be tricky. Here’s a quick guide to help you navigate the ups and downs of writing with a partner.
1. Set your expectations up front Make sure you and your partner are on the same page. If she wants to finish the first draft of your manuscript in six weeks and you were thinking six months, you have a problem on your hands. Since many of us juggle full-time jobs and kids along with writing, make sure your timeline makes sense for your lifestyle.
2. Play to each other’s strengths If you are a perpetual skimmer and your partner reads each line three times, I think you know who’s going to making most of your copy edits. Never let your ego get in the way of making the right decision for your book.
3. TRY not take it personally We can’t tell you how many times we’ve sent a chapter to the other that we thought was fabulous, only to have it demolished. We’ve even had a few catfights over it. *meow* It’s hard to have anyone critique your work, let alone a friend. But just try to take a step back and remove the emotion to understand where the feedback is coming from-you’ll have a much better manuscript if you do!
4. Be honest, but kind Even if your writing partner send you the biggest piece of crap you ever seen, be careful how you communicate edits to her. Make sure to tell her what you loved first (there had to be something you loved, right?!) before tearing into it. But if you find yourself censoring your edits because you’re afraid of her reaction, it’s time to sit down and have an honest discussion about your writing partnership.
5. Have FUN! Hopefully you’ve chosen to write a book with someone who’s writing you love. (Maybe that should have been #1 on this list?) Have fun and don’t get too caught up in petty things that don’t matter. You’ll have plenty of time to do that when it comes time to write the dreaded query letter. =)
*If you enjoyed reading this post, why not sign up for our delightfully infrequent newsletter?* Yes Please!