I like to read.
Obviously. I’m a writer. But up until recently, reading what other authors had to say just didn’t appeal to me. If they were successful I assumed they were just speaking with an air of entitlement: “I made it, so you should listen to what I have to say.” If they weren’t successful (yet) I assumed what they said was useless. These assumptions of course exclude “the greats” like Stephen King, Margaret Atwood etc. I think I’ve read On Writing by King three times now. But I am here today to admit, I was naive.
Other writers DO have something to say.
Once upon a time…
…there was a group of young and promising writers. They had great ideas, finished manuscripts, and starry eyes filled with hope of Bestseller’s Lists. The only question was, what should they do next?
Our intrepid writers set out to explore their options: should they go indie and self-publish, or try the traditional publishing route? While a couple members of the group chose to investigate the self-publishing path, this narrator decided to follow the group who went toward the traditional path first. (Check in with the indie group here!)
Recent days of warm sunshine have inspired me to sit with all my writing notebooks and see what I’ve yet to type up. That’s always been the downside of being a pen and paper girl – the transition to an electronic format.
Bad Habit #1: Not consolidating your scribblings.
Whether you prefer to set up in a coffee shop, or write on the bus, or use a speech-to-text app on your phone, there are countless ways writers end up saving their work in several places. Make it a habit, either weekly or monthly, to check that you’ve moved your writing into your long-term storage spot.
Welcome to 2017, Pen Friends!
Once the confetti has been swept up, and we’ve all recovered from staying up too late, it seems like the dawning of January only has one thing to declare: New Year’s Resolutions!
But let me be honest: I’ve never really cared for New Year’s Resolutions. Maybe it’s my Myers-Briggs type talking (I’m an INFP), but I can’t stand being made to create a long list of things I need to improve in my life, and then be made to feel guilty about it if I don’t follow through on them all. I realize that’s not the actual point of resolutions, but that’s how they’ve always felt to me–like that one-size-too-small, itchy sweater your mom’s second cousin gave you for Christmas: uncomfortable, yet you still feel obligated to wear it. No, thank you. (Sorry, Cousin Cate!)* Continue reading
At one point in writing history, writers began their stories by setting the scene. Setting was once used as a reflection characters emotions or actions. For example, a storm arises as a disagreement to your evil plot of revenge… But setting in books have changed today with things like TV. We still need setting, but it is not nearly as important as our characters and plot.
Setting brings us to a certain time and place.
Seattle’s physical setting compared with Albuquerque’s is night and day– one is high desert, with dusty browns and golds; the other is sea-level, with fertile flora and greens and blues. But they also eat different foods. ABQ leans more towards a Mexican flavor whereas most anyone in Seattle can list 5-20 favorite Asian foods. Continue reading
Writing fantasy is fun. Why else would so many people do it? Why would so many read it? There’s more than a monetary investment when a reader picks up a fantasy novel. They are taking on faith that the world the writer has created is going to engage them and spark their imagination. As an author, you have to think through more than loving your own world and story – it has to be easily comprehended by a reader so that they don’t get fed up and abandon the attempt to enter into your written world.
Congratulations! You have made it to the end of November. And if you’re in certain parts of the globe, you’ve already arrived in December.
I don’t know about you, but between writing like crazy this month, and getting caught up in the flurry of the holiday season, I’m already exhausted. Happy, but exhausted. Honestly, I can barely function after pulling a crazy marathon writing day yesterday in order to finish NaNoWriMo, so I’ll keep this short. 🙂
Today is the day when I planned to give you a really practical middle-of-NaNoWriMo pep talk, full of tips on how to push through to the end (whether you’re aiming for 50,000 words this month, or doing something else entirely).
I was talking to a friend a couple weeks ago about writing. One of the first things she said is that she had been planning on writing a book for some time but hadn’t. When I asked her why, her answer was “I just don’t know where to start.”
In today’s post, I’ll be sharing some tips on how to take those first steps.
If you are pursuing a career in writing, there are skills that NaNoWriMo and other contests like Pitch Wars can give you that will be invaluable, and from which you will reap benefits throughout your whole writing career.
Skill 1: Learning to Write Under a Deadline. AKA: working under pressure. Continue reading