Being a writer isn't hard. You sit down at your computer and start stringing words together. Words become sentences, sentences become paragraphs, and paragraphs become scenes. If you're writing a novel, put enough scenes in a semblance of order and there you have it - a manuscript.
If you're game, you can do some revising, some editing, some polishing. If you get bored, you can always go outside and play. Maybe you'll return to your work. Or not.
What will you do with that work? You can show it to others if you want. Or you can keep it tucked away somewhere safe, in a folder or a secret file on your laptop. It all depends on what kind of writer you want to be. There's nothing "wrong" with writing solely for yourself. Millions do.
It's entirely up to you.
But if your dream is to become a published writer, things get a little tougher. Somewhere along the way, it won't all be up to you. Others will read your work, and various members of the publishing food chain will provide input (some solicited, some not!).
Family members, workshop participants, critique group members, writing instructors, agents, editors, marketing experts, cover designers, publicists, and many others will pony up their ideas, comments, suggestions, corrections, additions, creations, alterations, and inspirations. All with (hopefully) a single goal in mind: to make your work stronger.
In my case, this is a GOOD thing.
I consider every comment and suggestion (although I don't agree with many of them, I consider each one). I think I come up with some pretty good ideas on my own, but I know for a fact that other people's ideas are often better. If I can be the beneficiary of their clever ideas (and best intentions), then that's a GOOD thing.
I'm not shy about
stealing good ideas making changes; I can use all the help I can get!
That's why I'm glad I'm with a publisher like Midnight Ink. They know what they're doing.
The title of HIDDEN FACETS (my original title) was changed to DIAMONDS FOR THE DEAD. Verdict: much better.
The title of THE LAST LAFF (my original title) has been changed to KILLER ROUTINE - A Last Laff Mystery. Verdict: much better.
Like I said, change can be a very GOOD thing.