How to Become a Professional Writer

How to become a writer? To become a writer it is necessary to have two specific skills: imagination and a good knowledge of written Italian.

If becoming a writer has always been your dream, surely these are the two main factors to be able to take the right path.

In fact, imagination and the ability to express concepts in correct Italian alone are not enough. It is also necessary to engage in the study, reading of great classics and contemporary authors and perhaps follow a training or creative writing course.

But let’s see in detail how to become a writer and how to write a book.

How to become a writer: 10 useful tips

Becoming a writer is a dream that many have, it is not unusual in fact to find people who want to reach this goal and who are wondering how to write a successful book.

There is certainly no right formula for becoming a famous writer , nor is it mandatory to go to a school or training course. But to start this journey, we want to give you some tips that can help you become a writer and write a book:

  1. Read many books by classical and modern authors;
  2. Study Italian grammar and syntax with commitment;
  3. Take a creative writing course to understand how a story is structured;
  4. Start writing various short stories to exercise your skills and stimulate the imagination;
  5. Start working on the idea of ​​a book;
  6. Write the plot and the story of the characters to follow a logical thread;
  7. Finish writing the book and make one or more corrections to check that there are no errors and typos;
  8. Have beta readers read your book to see if you need to fix any plot holes;
  9. Ask an editor for help to best propose your book to publishing houses;
  10. Propose your book to publishing houses to publish it or choose to publish with self-publishing on a free platform like Amazon etc…;

Of course, everyone who aspires to this profession is hoping to become famous with their first book or to be contacted by a famous publishing house.

But unfortunately it is not that simple, indeed the publication path , which is what it takes to become a writer in effect, is even more complex than writing a book.

Today, however, with the advent of self-publishing anyone who has written a book and wants to promote it without the intermediation of a publishing house can do so freely.

Self publishing has no out-of-pocket costs and is open to all those who have written a book and allows you to sell it both in digital format (e-book) and in paper format (paying in this case the cost of printing and binding). For each book sold there is then a percentage from the platform on which it is advertised equal to approximately 70% of the cover price.

If you are not a lover of self publishing, however, as mentioned before, to become a full-fledged writer you will have to propose text and synopsis to publishing houses looking for someone to publish, print and distribute it online and in bookstores.

How to become a professional writer

To publish a book with a publisher you should:

  1. Propose the synopsis of your book to publishing houses with a series dedicated to the theme covered by your work;
  2. Send – if requested – the synopsis, the back cover and the entire printed manuscript to the publishers concerned;
  3. Wait for a publishing house to offer you a contract in which the numbers of the copies that will be printed, the possible promotion system, the libraries in which the book will be distributed are indicated;
  4. Sign the contract  with the publisher.

This is the classic process for becoming a professional writer, because in this case you will not have to self-promote , nor will you have to manage the proceeds yourself or pay for the printing of copies as happens with self-publishing.

Once you are represented by a publishing house you can consider yourself a professional writer in all respects.

Before concluding, I want to give you a little advice. Publishing houses are not all free of charge, there are also EAPs , ie publishing houses that ask for a financial contribution to print a book.

With an EAP  your book will be published, but you will have to pay for the printing of the book, for the editing and also for the promotion. This is not the case with small or large publishing houses which, on the other hand, are not paid and which invest directly in the author.

Should you publish a book with a NO EAP or an EAP?

Surely, from the economic and visibility side, it is worthwhile to try to publish through a non-paid publishing house. The times are longer and often the distribution is not wide, but there is still a staff of professionals for editing and promotion that is totally free.

However, if you are in a hurry to publish a book, you are not interested in paying the amount for editing, you want to promote yourself and you want to distribute the book , perhaps for charity, free of charge or in any case you need it professionally, you can choose an EAP publishing house and rely on a paid service, which offers answers in a short time as you are the first person to invest in your work.

What the writer does

A writer is a professional who writes books for work.

So what does the writer do?

He writes, creates, studies, researches in the field, travels, outlines his idea and transports it to paper.

Whatever the type of text (remember that any kind of book makes the author a writer), a good professional must:

  • Always work on new ideas ;
  • Study and inquire about the topics to be covered in the book;
  • Verify sources;
  • Evaluate if interviews are necessary;
  • Write your own text following a lineup;
  • Work on promoting the book.

In short, the life of the writer is not just writing while sitting at your desk but there are many things to do when you choose to take up this profession. Furthermore, even if you have a publishing house behind you, you often have to think about your personal promotion as well, to increase book sales.

To this end, to promote a book you can:

  • Open an online blog
  • Offer to write in a literary magazine or on a themed blog
  • Open a social page to promote the book
  • Follow forums, groups on social networks in the sector

Now that you know what a writer does , I want to give you the latest tips on what to study to become a writer and some tips on how to write a book.

What to study to become a writer

To become a writer, certainly the study is fundamental, and at least concerns that of the Italian language and of narrative techniques or of writing a text.

It is not compulsory to study at university, or to follow a specific course, to become a writer , but these paths are certainly recommended to be able to expand your knowledge and skills.

The recommended degree courses for those who want to become a writer are:

  • Philosophy and Letters
  • Modern letters
  • Faculty of Communication Sciences
  • Master’s degree in Publishing and Journalism
  • Master’s degree in language and textual skills for Journalism and Publishing

These are some of the degree courses recommended for those who want to work in the publishing sector or in any case have a training in the literary field.

But in addition to obtaining a degree, it is also possible to follow training courses to become a writer such as:

  • Creative writing course
  • Courses for editors and proofreaders
  • Course for writing technical books and manuals

These courses can help you understand:

  1. How to structure a text
  2. How to correct a text
  3. What are the best techniques for telling a story
  4. What are the main features for writing a guide or manual

Training and graduation courses can help you along the way, but they are not enough, because to write coherent texts, to create a story or a guide you will always have to study and train.

The writer is a job that provides a continuous path of training and education that can then derive from a course or from the reading of other books and manuals, it does not matter, the important thing is to always commit and study in depth how to improve the quality of one’s own texts and content value.

6 tips for writing a book and becoming a writer

Over the years, many authors have given advice to write a book and become writers,  here are some of the most important suggestions of the authors of the contemporary era:

Remember: prose is architecture, it is not interior decoration.

Ernest Hemingway 

Avoid clichés: they are reheated soup.

Umberto Eco

Search for stories that lead the reader to read the book to the end, from which it is possible to obtain something concrete that can go beyond the story.

Jeffery Deaver

If your manuscript isn’t messed up enough, you haven’t committed. Only God does things perfectly on the first try.

Stephen King

The best way is to always stop when you are doing well and know what will happen next. If you do this every day, when you are writing a novel you will not be stuck.

Ernest Hemingway

Cut out the words that are useless. If you want to write to earn you have to get to the point. If once you take out the excess garbage you find that there is no point, tear off what you wrote and start over.

Stephen King