1. Never trust a celebrity publisher!
2. Be mindful of what you would like to achieve for yourself, and for your industry, in the long term. It’s very tempting to agree to unfavourable agreements / budgets, but if everyone keeps agreeing to do cheap work that’s all we’re going to get. I did a couple of children’s books for a flat fee fairly early on, in the hope that it would get me similar work in the future. It didn’t, and the books are still listed on internet bookseller lists 12 years later.
3. Be professional, reasonable, reliable, communicative and approachable.
4. Don’t be afraid to ask questions as early as possible to avoid the inevitable misunderstandings later on.
5. Don’t take negative feedback personally.
6. Don’t expect a regular income.
7. Keep your personal projects going as much as possible.
8. Get a website.
9. Make sure people can contact you easily, and keep your details up to date.
10. If you’re feeling isolated, think about joining Illustrators Australia and help build a community