Having one's first novel published is not as glamorous an affair as the media makes readers believe. The would-be author would start by convincing himself, that 'this is it, this is what I want to do, I must write, I must tell a story or do nothing else. It is novel writing for me, no matter how long it takes, no matter whether I'm published or not. Write I must, and a novel it must be'.
Emecheta, Buchi, That first novel, Kunapipi, 3(2), 1981.