Finished my YA novel! Are you officially an author once you finish your book? Or do you have to be Published? Now what....
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Hey there ladies,

I am so happy that I finally finished my book. So now what? What is next? I am going to do my re-write checking formatting, spelling & grammar and plot details and story. After that I will have two folks who I know who are editors and they will review for me. Then I will re-write again. After that I guess its time to get an agent? 

Please let me know that I am on the right track. I don't have a title yet :(  has anyone dealt with that? Not knowing what to name your book after it was completed? Also am I an official author yet? I told two of my girlfriends last night (one who will edit my book she is an author herself) she said I will not be an author until it's published. Is that true? My other girlfriend said, "nonsense, I am an author because I wrote a book just not a published author.."  So what is really true?

Ladies, can I get some feedback on that? Also has anyone used an editor on Shewrites to review their book? Is it expensive?

Ladies, thanking you in advance.

  • I realise I'm about two years late to this thread, but it was so nice to see someone else who had the same questions I struggle with now. Thank you, T. Swift, for posting this!

  • Congratulations on finishing a draft of your novel! I know how exhilarating that can be. I have grappled with the question of whether, or when, to call myself an author, after writing three novels (one published). Toni Morrison has said that she didn't consider herself an "author" until she had published several novels. (She was an editor at Random House for many years while writing her first books.) I tend to ask myself: "Am I writing?" and this is my validation for what I'm doing. So, I have to agree with B. Lynn Goodwin here...the act is really what's important.
  • Hey Pam,

    Wow someone who is in the same boat. Kudos to you! You are halfway through the editing process. I am just starting...sigh...

    Best of luck to you too!

    T. Swift

  • Thanks RB,

    I am getting to the edit stage now and I figure the name will come to me. Will keep you posted! 

  • Veronica,

    Thank you. I had to finally figure that out. I'm an author no matter if I am published or not. 

    Kind regards,


  • Hi T. I'm exactly where you are. I've just finished a draft of my first novel (likely YA), and am now more than halfway through my first total edit. I only have a tentative title. Once I get through the editing process, I plan to farm the book out to friends and family who've said they'd read it, as well as to "experts" who can vet details in my book (troll fishing and broken noses, being two) for accuracy. I've heard that hiring a professional proof reader is well worth the money, but I haven't seriously looked into all the editing-service options. Best of luck to you. I'd be interesting in learning what you find out.


  • From Merriam-Webster - 

    Writer - noun... a person engaged in writing, books, articles, stories, etc., especially as an occupation or profession; an author or journalist.

    Author - noun... a person who writes a novel, poem, essay, etc.; the composer of a literary work, as distinguished from a compiler, translator, editor, or copyist.

    No distinction is made between published and unpublished... you are an author... or a writer... or both!

    Title?  Uh-oh... you just said a four-letter word!!  Titles are the bane of my existence!  Excoriating my flesh is less painful than coming up with a title!  Why, oh why (looking up to the heavens) could not I have chosen a craft that did not require me to come up with titles for my work??  Like knitting?!

    Oh, wait... I didn't choose to write.  I never had a say in the matter.

    Congratulations, by the way, for reaching this crucial step in the process.  I wish you all the best.

  • A writer is someone who writes. Aren't writer and author synonyms? Do you take authority and authorship for your writing? I'm not sure about these technicalities, so I'm offering this as a possible way to think. 

    I have not used a Shewrites editor, but I've edited for many writers ... published writers ... aka authors.

    Author of You Want Me to Do WHAT? Journaling for Caregivers