My friend Katie Mahon co-wrote a memoir with two friends. I was curious about their process because while I think co-authoring would be an interesting experience - as well as a viable option for aspiring authors daunted by the thought of writing an entire book on their own - I also think it would be extremely difficult for several reasons (e.g. varied working styles, expectations, personalities, etc.). I posed these concerns to Katie, and here are her thoughts on how they made the process fruitful and enjoyable:
Sounds almost romantic, doesn't it? She's your friend, she's talented and you want to get to know her better. You both have similar ideas for the great American novel, so why not write it together? Half the work and twice the fun! Or maybe not so much, depending on your ability to build a healthy collaboration. I have lived to tell that tale - well, not the great American novel part. In fact, we wrote a spiritual nonfiction book together. There were three of us, and it took 10 years. In the end, here's how our successful partnership resulted in our memoir, The Miracle Chase, being published:
Thanks to Katie for her sage advice! I'm still not sure I could co-author a book because I write fiction and want to have control of the entire manuscript if my name is going on the jacket, but that's just my personality. As Katie has demonstrated, it's clearly doable if you and your partners work hard to stay (figuratively) on the same page.
How about you - would you ever co-author a book?
Maria Murnane is the best-selling author of the romantic comedies Perfect on Paper, It's a Waverly Life, Honey on Your Mind, and Chocolate for Two. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Learn more at www.mariamurnane.com.
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