How To Be A 21st-Century Writer

By on September 2, 2018
How To Be A 21st Century Writer - Writer's

Writing in the modern age is indeed different than it used to be. Gone are the times where all a writer had to do was write. Now the role requires a different, far more diverse skillset.

So do you have what it takes to be a 21st-century writer? Just what are the qualities necessary to succeed? To know you need to ask yourself the following:

Are you a researcher? With the invention and development of the internet, researching our novels has never been easier. But the wealth of information takes some sifting through. There are no excuses for a poorly researched book, and eagle-eyed readers will now be able to call you out if they don’t think what you’ve written is right.

Are you a tech buff? Nowadays writers are expected to be social media savvy, to be able to use apps and programmes to help them with their work and even to build and maintain their own websites. You can’t get away with falling behind the times when it comes to technological developments and social media trends. In fact, the more you understand how to use these to your advantage, the better.

Are you a marketer and promoter? Even authors who are published by traditional publishing houses are still responsible in some part for promoting themselves. Self-published authors have to take on the entire role. It’s no longer just about getting a single agent or editor to believe in your book; you have to build your fan base and increase your following by understanding how to market your work, how to find new readers and ultimately what makes a book sell.

Are you an inventor? With the rise in self-publishing meaning anyone and everyone can write and publish a novel, the book market is full to the brim. Writers have to make themselves stand out from the crowd. They have to take risks, to be unique, to tell a story no one else has told. Writers are now inventors, and they have to use all their creative skill to make their inventions count.

Are you a fighter? 21st-century writers have a battle on their hands as no writers did before them. The competition seems only to be getting fiercer, and the number of books by new authors that are taken on by publishing houses is getting smaller and smaller. The odds are stacked against us, but the rewards are great, and we must fight harder and longer than ever before.

These days being a writer means you must be prepared to learn new skills, to dedicate more of your time to your writing and to believe in yourself even when it feels like no one else does. 21st-century writers are ferocious, courageous beasts, and if you are one then you should be proud!

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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