Tag Archive - writing life

7 Ways to Quickly Increase Your Creativity

Today’s guest post is by author Jon Biddle.

The floodgates of creativity open wide when you are young and stay open. Then, as you age, the outlet runs dry. You get stuck in patterns, bad habits that kill that creative flow something gifted you with.

Creativity is a high form of intelligence, and when you are functioning at high levels, it is great to be active. But before you can think creatively, you need to have access to the right high energy. You need to be in a state of flow when the possibilities that come with creativity are present.

Creativity is about having fun and learning to enjoy the process. Creative writing is about experiencing the joy and the feeling of pride when one passes a concept through the word processor or pen and doesn’t become frustrated and depressed as one may do when trying to turn an idea into something tangible.

This last effort is really important. The worst thing you can do is give up after you get the initial spark of motivation.

Everyone gets a spark, but most of us diminish the motivation because we don’t believe in ourselves. Continue Reading…

How to Face Down Writer Fear

Fear is probably the #1 factor preventing writers from seeing success in their careers. I’ve had many writers tell me they’re afraid of failing, afraid of rejection, afraid of bad reviews, afraid people will laugh at them, afraid readers will hate their book, afraid people will judge them or tell them they are selfishly wasting their time writing when they could be doing something more productive or meaningful.

There are probably more reasons to be afraid than there are to keep writing.

Let’s face it. Every single writer has and will have negative responses from their writing. There will always be people that dislike, maybe even hate, your work. That’s life. The sooner you can accept and expect it, the easier it will be to knock over your fear.

One of the toughest and most important attitudes writers need to master is summed up in the famous words of Franklin Roosevelt: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

Words have power. They evoke emotion—even boredom. While some will criticize you for what you write—or for just writing instead of doing something else—others will be inspired, uplifted, and entertained by your work, your themes, and your messages.

So long as you seriously study the craft of writing, apply what you learn and put in the hours of practice … so long as you are teachable and listen to constructive criticism and work to improve your weak areas … so long as you put in the dedication to write your best book, you will see a measure of success. You will get to that finish line of publishing the book of your dreams. Continue Reading…

A Startling Remedy for Jealousy of Other Writers

Today’s guest post is by Noelle Sterne.

When other writers proudly announce their latest coup, my reflex of jealousy rises up. To my chagrin, I often agree with Ann Lamott: “You are hoping for small bad things to happen to this friend—for, say, her head to blow up” (Bird by Bird). This reaction, though, leads only to long debilitating blocks and despair.

In my many seasons of terrible jealousies, the most wrenching occurred when I was in college, craving to get through and get on with my writing career. I watched a classmate achieve my dream. She published a novel, dazzled the literary world, and collected constant rave reviews. Every bookstore displayed towering mountains of her best seller.

The greater her praise, the deeper my self-deprecation. Chronically depressed, I stopped writing and reading reviews and crossed the street when a bookstore loomed.

Finally, I realized something crucial, which led to the antidote I’m suggesting. This hard-to-swallow remedy is not proposed from magnanimity or naiveté. Rather, it’s plain old self-interest: As I proved for way too long, jealousy of other writers just doesn’t help. Continue Reading…

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