As writers we often find ourselves needing to adjust to our swiftly-changing industry to stay afloat. We have to be good writers, editors, and business-savvy, dealing with agents, book reviewers, publishers, and our readers. It can become overwhelming, juggling all these aspects of our writing without compromising our creativity.
For me, I’ve found that by learning the points of view that I engage with, balancing becomes easier.
I contributed to anthologies and worked under (and over) several editors to better appreciate them. When I was daunted by marketing, I used my work experience (collaborating on marketing projects for a small business) and I became a book reviewer to learn the industry. I worked on book production and came to value the tasks of publishers. I similarly approached customer service, organization, and time management (though goodness knows I can always improve there), and the landscape of my writing world has become more and more manageable.
There are various books that make the areas more approachable; here are some that were either recommended to me by professionals in the field, or that have been personally helpful to me. (Those I have used link to my book review.)
For the perspective of:
An agent: (Reviewing opens up this perspective, as I have to make decisions on what I will review, usually based on a synopsis; it becomes necessary to learn judgment of worthwhile books quickly.) The Insider’s Guide to Getting an Agent by Lori Perkins and 2013 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino.
An editor: The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White; Stein on Writing: A Master Editor of Some of the Most Successful Writers of Our Century Shares His Craft Techniques and Strategies by Sol Stein; Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself into Print by Renni Browne and Dave King; and The Fiction Writer’s Handbook: The Definitive Guide to McGuffins, Red Herrings, Shaggy Dogs, and Other Literary Revelations from a Master by Shelly Lowenkopf.