From Dream to Page: Easy Steps to Becoming an Author in Nigeria
Being an author comes with a lot of prestige and recognition. It makes you an authority in your field and offers you an opportunity to establish your brand, network and learn new skills like public speaking. Do you want to write a book but don’t know where to begin? Publishing a written work can be scary but our step-by-step guide is simple to follow.
Learn how to write
Writing is a skill that must be learned, just like any other. Usually, the first step is the difficult one. Every good writer started off as a novice but over time developed into the literary giant we now admire. In order to be a good writer, you must read the works of other people. Read a variety of genres to expand your vocabulary, spark your creativity and create your own writing voice. Spend at least 90 days writing on one subject. Maintain a daily writing schedule and do not worry if your essays look tacky. Use a journal, a note pad or app like Scrivener that enables you to organize and segment your writing.
Be open to criticism
Now is the time to criticize yourself. Edit your essays meticulously for grammatical and spelling errors, poor structure, misuse of punctuation marks and repetition of ideas. Repetitive sentences can be made shorter and more concise by using conjunctions. A great way to find mistakes is to read aloud. Share your work with your peers using Google Docs to keep track of comments. Grammarly is a fantastic essay editing tool.
Join a writing community
No writer improves in isolation. Join a writers’ community in your school, religious body or neighbourhood. Explore writing and literary groups on Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram and other social media sites. The Association of Nigerian Authors, Society of Young Nigerian Writers and Abuja Literary Society are a few examples. These organizations meet frequently to discuss literature, critic essays and host writing workshops. Becoming a member will help you in achieving your goal of becoming an author.
Create an audience
More people need to read your essays after working behind the scenes for so long. Step out of your comfort zone and share a few of your articles with your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram followers. Since this is your first public post, expect positive and negative feedback. Use these to improve your essays and always interact with your audience. Understand topics that gain more traction and post more of these.
Pick a niche and use all the knowledge you have acquired to write extensively on a topic that interests your readers. Own your voice and let it reflect generously. Edit thoroughly or hire professional editors, then prepare to publish. You can choose to self-publish on e-platforms like Okada books, Publiseer, Amazon KDP, Smashwords, LuLu or contact traditional publishing companies like Masobe books, Cassava Republic Press, Parresia Publishers, Farafina, Kachifo Limited, The New Gong, Literamed Publications and earn royalties from the sales of your book.
Congratulations on publishing your first book! All your hard work paid off. You are now an Author.