Posted in advice, Books, co-authoring, collaboration

Co-Authoring Pros and Cons

How many of you have written (or considered) writing with other authors?

I’ve written over 30 books so far…12 by myself and the rest with four very talented co-authors.

Four?

Yes, four. All collaborations that have had their bright spots (and low spots).

Why collaborate at all? Why not just write solo?

I can tell you from experience…writing with others has helped my own craft grow and take on new directions that I’d honestly never considered. My first was a wonderful realist and angsty author. She liked the sexier side of things with a ton of angst. My second is a glorious storyteller…she can weave a tale in five minutes and have you mesmerized. My third is a comic by profession and his tales have me cracking up on every page. The fourth is a dear friend of mine that we wanted to tell a story; it was released, but pulled back for re-tooling.

I’ve been fortunate to have these great people to work with; but not every pairing has a happy ending. The first lady I wrote with we got on great! Pages being written like mad, ideas flying..and then a complete breakdown of communication that I take the sole blame for. This was years ago; but it has helped me not make that same mistake again. Which bring me to my first point:

  • Be clear on your objectives for the book(s)

This is vital! In the planning/plotting phases things go awry. Things change. Be clear on what you want. It may not stay that way, so have an ‘out’ plan too.

  • Find someone who’s writing style is similar to yours

Not a necessity as all three write very differently from myself. My second coauthor is the most similar of them all; but like I said, not a requirement. Genre too, is important. My genre is gay fiction. Almost all of the authors I know write this genre.

  • How well do you handle conflict together? (characters and authors)

This is vital! My first coauthor and I parted ways over a disagreement on the continuation.

  • Be clear on separation of duties (who’s better at editing or outlining)?

I’m awful at editing. Light proofreading I can do; but I”m no editor.

  • Do you agree on publishers, royalties, marketing?

This is easy enough on the royalties; 50/50 split. As for marketing, that should be shared too. As for how to publish, both need to be in agreement as to self-pub or try a publisher.

I love collaborations; like I’ve mentioned, it’s helped me go in totally new directions. Just know that sometimes these things don’t work out. I hope these tips help if you decide to go into co-writing! (collaborations)

Steph

Author:

A lover of words and writing since they entered my life as a young child. Now a devout lover of men (especially late teen, college and mature men) to write their stories.

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