Authors you have so much power at your fingertips. If your story is good you could hook a reader for life. If you haven’t taken as much time or invested as much thought in your book you could lose a potential fan.
I know there are a lot of indie authors out there, and some of them are downright awesome. But some of y’all need to reach out and find a few beta readers and proof readers before you actually publish. I’ve seen stories lately with potential that was ruined because of typos, grammar, wrong words used, same words used over and over and over, and plot ideas just being lost or under-developed.
Ask someone who will give you honest feedback and then listen to what they say even if it isn’t exactly what you want to hear. I’ve talked to enough authors to understand that some writers feel like their stories are their creative babies and they just don’t deal well with constructive criticism. I’m not saying only give it to one other person to take a look at and change anything they say should be changed.
I’m suggesting instead that you get several viewpoints and if most of them bring up the same couple of issues – maybe consider a different approach to getting your idea across in whatever the situation is. When you’re doing a word count or spell check try to keep an eye out for words or phrases that you use often and think about using a thesaurus or a trusted friend for another way to say whatever it is you’re wanting to say.
You are the creator of the universe you want to share with others. Make stuff up and convince others that it could totally be that way. Hell, Shakespeare made up words all the time and now a majority of those are mainstream, every day words. Crazy, stupid, made-up slang makes it in to the dictionary each year. But you are never going to be able to make breathe and breath mean the same thing, dominant and dominate are not interchangeable words, and I won’t even start on they’re – their – there.
You have the power of words, but it’s up to you to use it correctly.