Completing and Publishing a Debut Novel, How I Made My Childhood Dream Comes True

My debut novel. My most special writing project. 

The Red Star Tattoo Conspiracy is a realization of my childhood dream to complete and publish a novel. This has been my most important writing endeavor and my greatest accomplishment as a writer so far.

The road to book publishing is not always easy, it entails a lot of sacrifices, determination, perseverance and hard work. One should be determined to get things done before effort paid off.

It has always been my dream to write a book. Ever since I was in my fourth grade, about the age of 10, I dreamed to have a book under my name because I fancied reading and story telling since pre-school years.

For decades, my focus was on how to realize my dream because I did not take a writing degree. And no idea how to start writing a book.

But I am always determined to make things happen.

To develop my skills in writing, I started creating a blog. I love royalty and everything about European monarchy, so I published a website that focused on royal topics. I would borrow books about monarchy, poured on research and wrote topics every week.

Until I had enough confidence to write a book.

I made a compilation of royal stories and turned it into a nonfiction book, The Tales of Royal Tragedies, which I published through Amazon in 2014.

But it was in 2015 that I have decided I should start writing a novel. 

For two months, I was raking my brain what theme and plot my novel should follow. I thought of writing a "deja vu" story after watching a Jennifer Love Hewitt movie, but then my interest is on crime-thriller and suspense, so started pouring my energy in research how to write a suspense book. 

As a preparation, I watched suspense movies on DVD, read books on the same genre and read writing tips from veteran book authors.

I was fascinated with mental asylum horror stories like Silence of the Lambs, Silent Hill, The Ward. So I thought of creating a similar theme out of this genre. It's an excellent choice. I love crime stories and my writing appetite is always on the suspense genre.
While writing the initial plot of this book, I listed several working titles: Mid Autumn Dream, The Haunt of a Dark Child, Mirage of Autumn, The Red Dragon Tattoo. 

Until I settled on The Red Star Tattoo Conspiracy. I could not recall exactly how I came up with the title but it was after writing chapter 50 that I decided to pick on something intriguing like "tattoo conspiracy".

The book had several revision of the stories, in fact I wrote five endings before settling on the final choice where Sophie and Bea became warring villain and heroine respectively. 

It took for me two years to complete the book. But it was not easy. I had so many frustrating episodes, I almost abandoned the book because I struggled how to finalize and polish the chapters. 

There were times that I was on the brink of giving up because I could not find momentum to continue writing the chapters. It was an uphill climb. Lots of ups and downs because I was scared the story did not follow a certain logic or a credible plot.

But then I kept reminding myself that completing a novel has been my long-standing dream and if I would not have the courage to do it, then no one will do it for me and I would end up my life in complete failure.

So I tried my best, read success stories of other writers and find ways to motivate and inspire myself to make things happen.

Until finally, I developed a wisdom to finish the book and picked up the title "The Red Star Tattoo Conspiracy.

After completing the book, the next step was to find book agents. For four months I struggled to find one because most agents would not accept a newbie author and I did not have previous traditional publishing experience. And perhaps, they find my debut novel a bit tacky or unattractive for publication.

So I ended up receiving so many rejection responses from book agents I queried. Losing interest to go for a traditional publishing journey, I have decided to self-publish it through the Amazon book publishing platform. 

It is easier and simpler. The platform gives book authors more freedom to do whatever they want for the book, and gives more flexible income scheme and book royalty is higher compared to traditional publishing.

It's very liberating. It gives me a voice to tell the world a different story about completing a novel and publishing it. And motivates others to work on their dreams.

Fulfilling a childhood dream is never going to be easy. Like everything else in this world. It's a tough journey. It requires a unique attitude to stay steadfast and focus. 

There are many roadblocks, hindrances, even failures and frustrations that come your way but you should never give up. It is not an option to give up. You should be determined to make it happen. 

Now, The Red Star Tattoo Conspiracy will have its second revision and a new sequel. If I did not pursue it and let myself affected with the roadblocks I would have not completed it years ago and perhaps my childhood dream to become a novelist might just be a dream.

So if you have long-standing dreams to make come true. Do it now. Right at this moment. If you continue to hesitate to make it happen, no one will do it for you. And you will end up your life in failure for not grabbing so many chances to work on your dreams.

Post a Comment