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  • Writer's pictureEmma Cohan

Book Review: How To Make A Living As A Writer

Writing Book Review

I've been very fortunate to have a life where I have constant access to hundred's of books. Books and writing have always been a passion of mine. It wasn't until my 40's that I got enough courage to actually start writing. Inspired to act on reading about an author who got a short story published that propelled her writing career. I randomly looked up short story admissions and wrote a story based on a pervious experience of mine, hit submit and got it accepted for publication. Within a 3 month period of time from the idea of a story to hot off the press. I had my first short story published in a book collection of short stories in my hands. It was a dream come true. After that success and my 1st paycheck, I got cocky and wrote 3 other short stories that never got accepted for publication. I was left wondering if I had earned my badge of actually being a writer with all the rejections.

I then retreated to my study. I like to say study instead of office because to me it adds an air of elegance to the reading room in my house. Yes it is also where I keep my laptop and other office supplies too, but mainly this room is for the books and the study and enjoyment of books - so it's a study!

If there's a book on the art of being a writer, because who doesn't fantasize about writing best sellers for a living. I'm going to get it, because I want to be a writer. I know, I know...just write Emma! But sometimes if I can learn from someone instead of taking years to learn it for myself, I'm taking that 1st option. Of course I'm looking for that holy grail of books that's going to tell me how to be a best selling author. So I keep buying books on the study of writing. It's kinda like a college class to me at this point and the books on writing are the lectures with the authors being my professors of the moment. I read a book or two on writing each month and I'm always coming back to my books for pearls of wisdom when I need it.

My latest college professor is the one, the only James Scott Bell who lives in Los Angeles too and teaches at Pepperdine University in Malibu, a 45 min drive from me. When I learned this info I wanted to drive to Malibu and ask him a thousand questions but I didn't want to get arrested for stalking!!

Anyhow onto the review!

How to Make a Living as a Writer by James Scott Bell is a comprehensive guide for aspiring writers who want to turn their passion into a profitable career. The book covers various aspects of the writing profession, from the craft of writing to the business side of things, giving writers tools they will need to succeed in today's competitive market.

I found Bell's writing style to be engaging and easy to follow, and he provided practical advice on everything from finding your niche to building a platform and marketing your work. He also delves a little into the legal and financial aspects of writing, including contract negotiations and taxes, which can be confusing for many writers and I'm sure there's a book or blog or podcast out that can touch on that a bit more.

One of the standout features of this book is the inclusion of what successful writers have done like personal experiences with valuable insights into the writing industry along with book recommendations that can inspire and help you. These provided a glimpse into the diverse paths that writers can take to build their careers. I actually brought 2 books from Bell's recommendations by Joanna Penn. They were How to Market a book and Your Author Business Plan. I should do a review on those in the future!!

In conclusion, "How to Make a Living as a Writer" is an excellent resource for anyone looking to turn their writing talent into a sustainable career. Whether you're a new writer just starting out like myself or an experienced author looking to take your career to the next level, this book provides valuable advice and inspiration that you can apply to your own writing journey.

James Scott Bell also has various books written about the craft of writing and I admit I probably have most of them! I'll have to write about those in my future endeavors! Check out his website for all the latest info that James Scott Bell is up to.

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