Many writers come from backgrounds you typically expect: English majors, journalists, English teachers, history, or literature students. Then some writers like me have no background in literature or writing except for a deep love of books.
A few years ago, I along with thousands of others, waited for the next book in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series. This book series was made famous by the television show “Game of Thrones”. I had read every theory on the dark corners of the web about what would happen in books six and seven. As a reader, I was eager to find out what happened to my favorite characters. After waiting many years, a seed got planted, and I wondered what it would mean to write my own royal saga loosely based on Indian culture.
Without any training apart from having read many books, I started writing. Princess Meera, Prince Jay, the many supporting characters, and the land of Magadha took life on-page.
I only had a vague idea of the story I wanted to tell when I started. With no outline, my plot grew organically. Over 100k words later, I finished my first draft. In my edits, I chopped characters, rearranged plots and scenes but the core story of love, family, and duty remained.
Then I worked with a wonderful editor who helped me polish the story. As an engineer by training and trade, my writing before this book primarily focused on writing facts, charts, and technical specifications. A story needs settings, characters, scenes, conflict, and emotions. Each edit added depth to my tale. I am still honing my storytelling craft and having fun doing it, as I write book 2.
This year, Heir to Malla was published. Releasing a book is like raising a child and letting them go. My book is now in the hands of readers.
My hope is readers have as much fun reading the book as I had fun writing it.
My advice to writers is to write your story first. Pour your heart out. You can fix things later in the edits. And it is never late to start learning the craft.