Comments: 105 • Responses: 43  • Date: 

Oh_god_not_you40 karma

What got you into writing so seriously at such a young age ?

lsmythbooks50 karma

I've been writing ever since I can remember. I even have a "book" I made my folding paper in half and scribbling with a marker. I think my interest in books probably stemmed from the fact that I wasn't really allowed to go on the internet, watch TV or movies, or play video games until I was a bit older. Books were my best and only form of non-outdoor entertainment.

Oh_god_not_you11 karma

What is your next book going to entail ?

lsmythbooks14 karma

Hmm, that's a bit of a secret! But Book III has elements of thriller/mystery set in the near future that centers on a female character forced to solve riddles.

TheAmbitiousBaker21 karma

Very cool! Do you think you will continue to be a writer when you get older? Or do you think you will want to try something different?

lsmythbooks22 karma

I would love to try all sorts of things, particularly when I'm in college. As a career, though, I'm looking into foreign correspondence, e.g. journalism that takes place mostly in another country. And I'm sure I'll never stop writing fiction.

TheAmbitiousBaker9 karma

College can be a wonderful place to expand your interests. Journalism sounds fascinating, glad you have a goal in mind. As long as writing brings you pleasure, I say keep doing it!

Is there one country/region you would like to cover?

lsmythbooks12 karma

I'm fluent in French and learning Russian, so I'd love to go anywhere I can use either of those languages. I'd also like to learn Arabic.

TheAmbitiousBaker3 karma

As someone who can't learn languages very well, kudos to you! Would you ever consider being a translator?

lsmythbooks6 karma

Definitely! I'm looking at translating my own books, since my publisher is international.

TheAidan98716 karma

What sort of challenges did you face (if any) to have your first book published at such a young age? How did you overcome these challenges?

lsmythbooks20 karma

Some publishers specifically say that submissions need to be written by authors over a certain age. Also, while I viewed my age as something unusual and unique, some publishers will automatically write young applicants off because of legal/communication issues. In addition, it was difficult to keep up with the paperwork and marketing while being a student. I overcame these challenges by finding an amazing publisher and communicating the importance of my writing to my parents, who were happy to help me find extra time to write.

fuckubitch42010 karma

What advice can you give people interested in writing & publishing their own book(s)? Any helpful website you can refer them to?

lsmythbooks17 karma

There's a site called Write Your World that's a great community for young writers. I also recommend joining a local writing club and attending a writing course (my favorite was held at Interlochen). In addition, the best advice I can give anyone is to not be deterred by rejection!

fuckubitch4204 karma

Thank you kindly. Congratulations on your success & may you achieve more

lsmythbooks6 karma

Thank you so much!

rightful_hello5 karma

How much money have you earned since you started? What tips would you give to someone who'd want to publish books on Amazon.

lsmythbooks-1 karma

My publisher sends out checks/reports on an odd schedule and the book hasn't been out that long, so I can't give an exact dollar amount. Also, to anyone looking to publish on Amazon, I'd say to develop a strong social media presence that centers on your writing but also caters to what people visually enjoy: photographs, graphics, and so on.

Edit since people don't like the "odd schedule:" no, I don't know the answer at the moment and I'm not quite comfortable answering even if I did know.

Vet_Leeber8 karma

My publisher sends out checks/reports on an odd schedule and the book hasn't been out that long, so I can't give an exact dollar amount.

For future reference, it's better to just admit you're not comfortable answering the question.

There are legal reasons that you have to know how much money your publisher has given you so far; taxes, etc, and you should really have a running log somewhere of every check they've given you.

If you don't have an easy way to determine how much you've made so far, you really need to fix that. It'll bite you in the ass at some point.

lsmythbooks1 karma

Alright, fair enough! However, what I said was completely true; though I do keep my own records, I don't have then at the moment and I don't have any idea of the number I'm at. :)

ZarafFaraz1 karma

Is it enough that you can make a career out of it or it's more like a part time job?

lsmythbooks2 karma

Right now I definitely don't make enough to survive on only writing! From what I've heard from author friends, that's pretty typical - they all work separate jobs or are still in school.

ZarafFaraz1 karma

I'm an amateur writer myself. One of the things that I found really helped me was a podcast called Writing Excuses. They have professional writers giving their input on various writing topics and subjects. You should check it out cause I think you would make an amazing guest speaker for them.


lsmythbooks1 karma

Wow, this is great! I'll 100% look into this.

ZarafFaraz1 karma

Yeah you need to try and sell this "young published author" status that you have as much as possible.

Writing Excuses is a good platform to get noticed by a new audience, but their audience isn't huge. Find other platforms like that to spread your status.

Find out who you need to talk to so that you can get invited to talk shows like Oprah, Ellen, etc. You get yourself in something like that and you'll become viral really fast. You only have a few years before you become "too old" to really sell it, so take advantage now 😀

lsmythbooks1 karma

Great advice!

Sunny2marrow3 karma

How do your classmate treat you about your accomplishments?

lsmythbooks7 karma

Hmm. I'm homeschooled, so I don't necessarily have classmates, but strangers who find out seem to be a little surprised/skeptical until they read my work.

Velinna2 karma

How do you feel your writing has changed over time? How do you feel about the writing in your first book?

lsmythbooks8 karma

I try not to read my old writing too often, as I tend to get judgemental. Personally, I don't like my own writing style - it's a bit like how people don't like their own voices when they hear themselves recorded. I think the writing in my first book needed a lot of improvement! I think I've gotten better at a more casual, accessible style over time.

nosam5552 karma

What things are you intrested in besides writing, or does that take up almost all your time?

lsmythbooks6 karma

Surprisingly, writing takes up barely any of my time. Other activities I enjoy include tennis, martial arts, photography, and video game design. Also, I'm still a fully functional high school student enrolled in multiple AP courses. It's all about balance!

ralanr2 karma

What tips would you have for people trying to get published? Any publishers to avoid?

lsmythbooks4 karma

Research everything! Participate in writing competitions. Ask people to read and evaluate your work. Don't be afraid of rejection. If you think you can't, you won't, so it's important to try!

Blue_Bomber271 karma

Congrats on the success.

I'm currently writing a novel (in-between my real job) but would love to get it published and find an agent.

What do you suggest to look for in an agent and how long does the process take?

lsmythbooks2 karma

I actually don't have an agent - I submitted directly to a publisher. Once they accept the book, though, it takes about a year to a year and a half to actually have a book in your hand. From what I've heard from other authors, this is pretty standard.

When looking for an agent, just be sure they're 1) reputable, and 2) interested in your genre!

PhilsterM91 karma

Where would you like to see yourself in 10 years? Other than still writing books, of course

lsmythbooks1 karma

Probably as a journalist working in a foreign country, hopefully with enough book revenue to buy a sandwich. ;)

lsmythbooks1 karma

Home schooled with online classes.

salaciousBnumb1 karma

Any tips on how to overcome procrastination?

lsmythbooks2 karma

There's an article on my website about this. In short, it says to set specific times when you swear to yourself you'll write and write only. Discard your phone for that period of time.

Shellybellywok1 karma

So.. you're 15 now?

lsmythbooks2 karma

I'm 16 now!

Shellybellywok0 karma

I feel like people have the most talent and imagination when they're in their teens. Don't let the success go to your head but also don't stifle your originality. Congratulations on your success!

lsmythbooks1 karma

Thank you so much!

BurgerPleaseYT1 karma

Suggestion: you should include an awesome bacon cheeseburger.

What's your favorite burger joint?

lsmythbooks2 karma

You are correct about this and your suggestion will be duly noted. Also, I have no idea!

kalel19801 karma


lsmythbooks0 karma

Not sure how else I can prove it. If you have suggestions, I'm willing to hear them.

Homefulhobo1 karma

What sorts of things do you draw inspiration from? You’re pretty young so I’m interested to know if it’s from life experiences or if you just have a whole world In there :))

lsmythbooks1 karma

Well, I've had some odd life experiences (moving 13 times, military, etc.) Somebody my writing comes from that, and some is purely imaginary.

Homefulhobo1 karma

That’s crazy at 13! Hey, whatever you can draw from that makes you a published author at 13 is certainly not mundane haha. You said in a previous question you were homeschooled, do you think having a more loose style of schooling has helped you to become more creative? Or do you wish you had classmates around to draw from too?

lsmythbooks1 karma

Hmm, this is a hard question. I'd say yes to both questions - homeschooling has definitely given me opportunities I wouldn't otherwise have had, but I don't get to observe people my age on a daily basis (which is a definite downside, since I write mainly YA fiction).

Digital3320061 karma

First off, congrats. What are your thoughts on online platforms like Wattpad and webnovel?

lsmythbooks5 karma

I've used Wattpad, so I certainly don't dislike it! It's great for getting experience and feedback. However, I think anyone who wants to pursue writing as a career/earn money from writing should try to publish their work. I've used both traditional and self-publishing for different projects, and both have ups and downs.

dreamofdreamcatcher1 karma

About how long does it take for you to write one book? Since you are so young, has that ever been a small mental block in your brain? (side-note, what is the end-times genre?) I admire your work ethic at this age - I can barely even get through a normal school day lol and I'm a bit older than you!

lsmythbooks2 karma

It takes me around a year to write a book if I'm slow, and six months if I can avoid writer's block. And yes, being young has been a block in several ways. It makes me question the value of my work, and it also makes publishers leery of signing me.

dreamofdreamcatcher1 karma

I'm happy you have gotten success to validate your great writing skills! Also, do you have any particular goal in mind (like do you hope to reach a certain reputation? to sell a certain number of books? or are you going to write until your heart is 100% content?)?

lsmythbooks2 karma

I did set a goal to write four books by the end of HS, but I hold very loosely to it (though it looks like I'm going to beat it with room to spare!) However, my main goal on writing is to make myself and others happy. I'll keep pursuing that goal until I'm ready to stop.

simonbleu1 karma

When you said 14 for a moment I thought you were C. Paolini

Outside of the talent of a person to tell a story in an engaging way (style and prose), what would you say takes for a book to be comercially sucessfull?

lsmythbooks1 karma

In all honesty, I've read some terribly written books that were 'commercially successful,' e.g. famous and making a lot of money. I think it's mostly about the story and knowing how to market and appeal to the right audience.

simonbleu1 karma

Exactly, thats why I asked that precisely.

It makes sense, I guess thats why YA sell so much with romance

lsmythbooks1 karma

Yep, romance and fantasy seem to be the current most popular genres. I think it's edging toward thriller, but that could be a misconception.

bearcat--1 karma

how come she removed her post - was she getting harassed?

lsmythbooks1 karma

Who, me?

bearcat--2 karma

yeah! your description for your ama is removed, so i cannot read it

lsmythbooks1 karma

Heh, looks like I got marked spam. Was fun while it lasted guys!

justhid1 karma


lsmythbooks1 karma

Nope, though I've been there a few times!

michaelsdino1 karma

What are your books that are published?

lsmythbooks1 karma

Stories of the Night is out now, and Made for Mercy is coming next summer.

TinUser1 karma

As a writer, what current movies (last 3~ years) do you think could have been written better?

lsmythbooks3 karma

I have a LOT of bones to pick with the Amazon Jack Ryan series. What I mainly dislike is the fact that the viewer can't solve the mystery by themselves - there are huge leaps of logic that the screenwriters just never filled in. I understand that the episodes need to be short, but that's no excuse for leaving out important information.

Blazestar41 karma

What type of advice would you give to someone who is working on their first manuscript?

lsmythbooks3 karma

Have people read/criticize!

BoyMeetsWorldBoy0 karma

Hello! I am 15, and this inspired me to start writing now. What are some things I can do to get better at writing stories and what should I use to publish the stories?

lsmythbooks5 karma

Ask people to read and evaluate your work! Feedback, especially critical feedback, is always helpful. Also, you should enter writing competitions. Aim to be published, but Wattpad is a great place to start.

snakeeater340 karma


lsmythbooks2 karma

That's typical. Honestly, I can't say what exactly got my work accepted - I'd have to ask my editor. All I know for sure is that some publishers are looking for very specific things, so they may reject even well-written work. If you're getting rejected with feedback provided, that's a good sign. Keep trying and look for publishers/agents who are specifically interested in your genre.

Nothing_fancy77110 karma

My daughter is 7 and has such an amazing imagination. I'm trying to encourage her to write her own stories. Let's pretend I'm eventually successful in encouraging her to do this, how did you go about getting your work published? Was there some sort of agent involved? Were you rejected at all?

lsmythbooks3 karma

I have been rejected many times! Some came with feedback, some were just plain form rejections. And no I don't currently have an agent. I was able to find a great publisher (through the director of a film I was in) that allowed direct submissions. Not all publishers allow this, and I'm currently thinking of switching to an agent rather than submitting directly to the publisher. I would start by asking any authors you may know about who they published with. If you don't know any, ask around online. Do some google searches (and always make sure the publisher/agent is reputable!) Look in your daughter's favorite books to find out where they were published. Also, I strongly encourage her to enter writing competitions. The sooner the better!

marelkey0 karma

do you make up stories for your books, or are they based on your life?

lsmythbooks3 karma

Both. My first book includes a bit about the Civil Air Patrol, which I participated in for a bit. However, the story is completely fictional. I've never had anyone try to kill me, at least not that I know of.

dobby_h0 karma

Do you still prefer books over movies/TV/etc?

lsmythbooks2 karma

Hard question. I love pretty much all forms of entertainment now, but I'll always have a soft spot for books.