Tag Archive - writing advice

5 Strategies to Help Writers Get the Writing Done

For this week’s Throwback Thursday, we’re looking at an excerpt from a previous post titled How to be a First-Time Novelist (without Going Insane) by Jenny Bravo.

When I first decided to tackle English as a major, I was starry-eyed and hopeful, thinking to myself, “I’m going to write a novel; I just know it.” I loved my classes, adored my teachers, and lived in a collegiate bubble where everyone had potential. For every bad critique, a good one followed close behind. No writer was left behind.

Sound familiar?

Now, almost a year out of graduation, I’m living in a new, less structured writer bubble. It’s called “The First Time Novelist” bubble. There are days when I feel I have it all together, when the writing flows and I think to myself, “This is too easy.” Then there are days when I sit in front of the computer screen, staring at the keyboard with nothing in my brain but a recap of last night’s New Girl. Continue Reading…

3 Wonderful Things That Come with Getting Published

For this week’s Throwback Thursday, we’re looking at an excerpt from a previous post titled A Few Cool Doors That Open When You’re Published by author and screenwriter Harrison Demchick.

It’s a long, long road to publication, as months or years of writing give way to months of editing, and then more editing, and then more editing. But you’ve arrived at that very best version of your story. You’re proud of it, and you should be. And once you launch it on Amazon, or your publisher launches it into the world, there will be nothing between you and superstardom. Right?

Yeah. Not so much.

No Guarantees

Writers who follow the publishing industry already know full well that creative success and commercial success have, at best, a complicated relationship, and even the most carefully considered marketing plans include no guarantees. When my novel, The Listeners, launched in late 2012, I knew from my own seven years in publishing that the top of the New York Times bestseller list was pretty unlikely, and I was going to have to fight like hell even to make anyone aware of my book. After all, a million new books are published every year. Continue Reading…

3 Hard Truths I’ve Learned about Novel Writing

Anyone who’s written a novel—or attempted one—can attest to the level of difficulty involved.

Some of you are presently in the throes of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). You’re racing the clock trying to complete a novel in one month. And that’s a fun and challenging thing to do.

But here’s my question for you: Why are you doing this? Is it just to see if you can throw together something that looks like a novel so you can feel a sense of accomplishment? And don’t get me wrong—I don’t belittle this at all. It takes real strong stick-to-itiveness (yes, that’s a word!) and a big jar of butt glue to stick you in that chair and write a whole lot of words.

If you get to the finish line, you should be proud!

But that’s just one small aspect of what’s involved with being a novelist. In other words, you may have proved to yourself you can be disciplined and can get the writing done.

But just as with someone spending hours throwing random ingredients into pans and cooking up concoctions, that doesn’t mean the results will be palatable.

In fact, the whole “write fast and hard” to become a successful novelist mentality is really off track. Far from the hard truths that novelists need to face.

Let me tell you what I’ve learned after thirty years of writing (17) novels. Just three hard truths that I hope you’ll consider. Because you can write a hundred novels and do NaNoWriMo every year and get no closer to your dream (if it is your dream) to become a successful novelist. Continue Reading…

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