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.
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)