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So you want to be an author...

Being a successful author is the dream of millions of people around the world. However, only a chosen few are able to make a living as an author. Fewer still are able to achieve worldwide fame and immense fortune, like Daniel Handler.

That having been said, it is possible. You just need to dedicate yourself to your craft. You also need to be able to deal with rejection, and take constructive criticism. These are two things that many people find it hard to deal with when they first begin to submit drafts of their writing to agents and publishing houses. Here are some of the things you will need to keep in mind as you are pursuing a career as an author.
Photo credit: Infoparrot.
If you are truly serious about making a living as an author, your writing needs to be the top priority in your life. When you are first getting started, you will obviously need to work another job to make ends meet.

However, every spare moment of your time needs to be spent writing. This is the only way you will be able to improve your writing skills to the point where companies will be interested in publishing you. If you are willing to let several weeks go by between writing sessions, this is a clear indicator that you are not passionate about becoming an author.

Show your writing to other people
Ideally, you want to avoid getting opinions on your writing from people who know you. Friends and family members will never give you the harsh and completely objective criticism that you will need in order to improve. Friends and family will not want to hurt your feelings. They will always want to encourage you and boost your spirits. Therefore, they will rarely tell you that your writing is bad and that it lacks focus.

However, this is exactly the thing that you need to hear. If your writing is bad, you need to be told this right away. This will allow you to work on your mistakes and polish up your prose. Since friends and family will not give you the biting commentary you desire, you should take it to creative writing professors at colleges near you. These people are experts in writing. They don't know you, so they will not be afraid to be brutally honest. However, you may need to pay them to read your manuscript.

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