Words of wisdom, writers on writing, while we wait for more guests to show up on this blog, enjoy these pearls from writers!
Be obsessed about your writing. Practice it.
Stop being delusional about your writing. Know where you are in learning the craft and business, and figure out how to get to your goal. If you want millions of readers for your work, study the bestsellers. Figure out how they got there. And then learn how to be the best storyteller in the business.
Do the work.
Figure out your goals. Not just for today or this week. But your ultimate writing goal. Then break it into chunks. Figure out how to achieve those monthly, yearly, five-year, and ten-year goals. Have a plan, and work on it.
If you end up slipping down the ladder because of something, figure out why you slipped, figure out how to avoid doing it again, then start climbing again. Smarter, and with the right attitude.
Because attitude really is everything. And your attitude should include three things:
Strive for a personal best.
Relax and enjoy the journey.
And most of all…
Run your own race.
If you need help and finally ready to make this jump from English teachers to real professional fiction writing, first start following Heinlein’s Rules without missing. And then to get away from critical voice outlining, read the posts here or buy the book on Writing into the Dark.
Learn how to start keeping YOU in your work.
“Same is lame.”
“Fitting is boring for anyone who wants to be extraordinary.”
Let that creative voice out to play and leave it alone. And trust me, if you do that, you’ll have a blast.
And you will let the real you stay in your work.
I don’t want to improve it. When I’ve written something, that is the way it has to stay. It’s like one of those old photos you come across. From the 1970s. And you have this terrible Seventies haircut and giant lapels on your jacket. It’s ridiculous – but it’s there. It is what it is. Leave it alone.
As a writer, I am keenly aware that I am not in control of half my art. The exact same text one reader finds exciting, subtle, nuanced, funny, and moving, the next reader may find boring, dull or unmemorable. Changing the text to capture the second reader may do nothing more than lose me the first.
– Lois McMaster Bujold
So there’s no outline, nothing like that. That freezes it, it takes what should be a liquid, plastic, malleable thing to me and turns it into something else. Hey, to me it’s the difference between going to a canvas and painting a picture and going out and buying a Craftsmaster paint-by-the-numbers kit.