I’ve finished writing and editing the big Second Draft of Laura the Explorer and it is now sitting with my editor undergoing a full structural edit. I’m excited because this is the furthest I’ve ever been with a novel – to have finished a draft from start to finish, not just once but twice, and to now have a professional looking over it is a huge achievement.

So I thought I’d quickly reflect and share some of the things I’ve learned in the last few weeks, because getting this second draft finished was not easy! And if you’re struggling your way through a second draft re-write then hopefully you’ll find some of these observations useful.

A few weeks ago I embarked on the first professional assessment of my work-in-progress novel and completed a Manuscript Assessment via the New South Wales Writers Centre.

At the time, the manuscript was still in first-draft stage, however I was confident that the beginning was pretty set (it was just the middle and end that I was still fiddling with!). I’ve always been confident that my writing is good, however I wanted a professional opinion as well to make sure I wasn’t completely wasting my time on a book that lacked warmth, character development and/or a decent plot.

Four months ago I quit my full-time job in digital marketing to devote my time to making my lifetime goal of becoming a published author a reality.

The first thing I did was look seriously at how being an author can work as a business. Because, realistically, an author is a sole trader or a small business owner. The books I will produce will by my ‘products’ and I need to be able to earn enough money via selling these books to offset my own costs of living as well as expenses incurred in the production of the books.

Easy, right?


Welcome to the website of Sarah Begg, Australian writer and independent author.