From Manuscript to Bookshelves in how Long?

A little late today, but I’ll be bac,k on track tomorrow.

I just read an article about the writing processes of Diana Gabaldon and George R.R. Martin. I don’t need to inform you of Martin’s process because you likely know he takes his sweet time writing his books. Gabaldon is slightly different. She writes all the time, no matter what she has going on.

I know what you’re thinking. Just about every author today writes more than Mr. Martin. Eh. Maybe. But that’s not the point here. Gabaldon was asked when her next book will be released. “Six weeks after I finish writing it.”

Wait, what? How can a book be published just six weeks after the author finishes writing it? There’s editing and editing and editing and marketing and so many things that go into the publication of a book. But she was very adamant about the timetable. And it got me thinking. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of such a schedule from any popular author or anyone here on WordPress. It almost sounds like the timetable to self publish. Could this six-week rule be the norm? Or is it just something that works for her?

Tell me what you think about a book hitting bookshelves just six weeks after its author finishes writing it. I think it’s a little on the quick side.

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19 thoughts on “From Manuscript to Bookshelves in how Long?

  1. I think its a little on the quick side, too, but maybe because she has published so many books, she has a formula of sorts that works for her. I know that Terry Prachett published a lot of books in his lifetime, and sometimes a couple of books in a year. So, who knows 😛 Definitely wouldn’t work for me!

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  2. It’s definitely quick, but I think publishers are starting to speed up these days. They’ve been getting a lot of competition from self-published authors, so I think a few things have been tweaked. As long as it doesn’t compromise quality!

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  3. I assume by “finish writing it” she means “finish polishing the final final draft.” After all the editing and whatnot. Otherwise that just seems totally inconceivable!

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  4. Well, when you think how fast a self published book gets out… that 6 weeks, it isn’t so incredible,

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  5. I guess it all depends on what she considers “finished writing.” Does she include the editing and revisions as part of the writing? How long did the manuscript take her?

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  6. Sounds very, very fast. When I’ve been reading around the subject, many guides say a novel with a big publisher can take at least a year – probably more like eighteen months – to reach the shelves from when the author finishes writing. As you say, editing, publicity, talking to outlets all takes time. Odd – very odd. She does make it sound like mass production – a sausage machine way of writing

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  7. I’m unable to find the quote, but I remember Diana posting on her Facebook page, saying that after she completes a book, the next step was rewriting parts of it, followed by the editing process.

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