During his guest spot at the Online Writing Festival, Matthew Reilly discussed his early career, and how he went from self-publishing 1,000 copies of Contest to signing with the William Morris Agency in New York and Smart Cars with trailers for Scarecrow.

Among Matthew’s advice for writers was what he considers the most important tip: “Write something you would love to read. Readers can tell if you’re not fascinated by what you’re writing.” His second tip is revise, revise, revise.

Matthew says the best thing about being a successful writer is writing full-time, and the worst is disparaging remarks about ‘commercial’ writing. Or nasty reviews on Amazon.com.

To read more of Matthew’s Q&A, subscribe and visit the Forum archives or go to Writing Resources.

By the way, copies of the original, self-published version of Contest now sell for $1,200 on eBay.

The Australian Writer’s Marketplace is Australia and New Zealand’s only guide to the writing industry. While providing submission and contact details for the print media and publishing industry.

One Response to “Matthew Reilly on Agents and Self-Publishing”

  1. The Sheer Vanity… | Lucrezia Magazine - Official Blog,

    […] For example, Australian author Matthew Reilly self published his first novel Contest. He distributed it through various book outlets, and kept note of his sales. He marketed the novel successfully, and the novel was a financial success. This success, always based on sales, enabled him to publish his other novels through a trade publisher. Reilly is an exception. His novel Contest is a tightly written novel of good quality. Unfortunately, many self published works on the Internet, are the opposite. They go round and round the mulberry bush, without paying attention to sentence structure or plot. […]

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