Tag Archives: the writing life

21 Tips for Writers (10 + 11 = 21)

A great post landed in my Twitter account today—a must share with fellow restless writers.

From tweet to post: 21 Tips for Writers by Australian writer, Jodi Cleghorn (inspired by: Emerging Writers Festival, Melbourne) is a terrific read, and even better chuckle.  Jodi believes that “writing is writing—whether you’re a song writer, a journalist, an academic, a poet, a film maker or a novelist – and there are commonalities to the creative process of writing and how to make it work for you.”

Check it out: 21 Tips for Writers

  • Defend your work and keep your creative dignity – learn to say no/no way/go f*ck yourself – because no one else will stand up for your work.
  • Don’t show your work to family and friends – you will erroneously become attached to what they think is brilliant – which in fact is likely to be absolute crap.
  • Back yourself – don’t ask for permission to do what you want to do.
  • Look after yourself – writing will ruin your health – so take care – consider writing standing up (apparently Hemingway did this) and making use of pen and paper rather than chaining yourself to a computer.
  • Persevere – your yell is someone else’s whisper and whispers are pervasive, it will get heard – work on several projects – this keeps you energised and working creatively even when one project isn’t firing.
  • Get to know your process – work out when and where you work best and do it your own way – try to write every day, even if just for a few minutes and carry a note-book with you so ideas don’t escape you.
  • Don’t hold back and don’t protect yourself – say things no one else has said before – turn off the inner critic/editor.
  • Cultivate a community of writers – writing can be a lonely enterprise, but it doesn’t need to be – other writers understand where you are, what you’re thinking and feeling.
  • Build an audience online – utilise a website or a blog to connect with readers – capture them through a mailing list – don’t be afraid to give away free stuff.
  • Go out and live your life – do not allow yourself to become stuck in a hole of your own creativity – especially when you’re creatively blocked – being in the real world is the best antidote.

Okay, seriously I can count. This is only 10. For the remaining 11 visit Write Anything. And while you’re there, check out their weekly #fictionfriday challenge.

How can you incorporate these tips into YOUR writing life? 

Beckie

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The top 10 reasons writers write

Why do writers write? Why do sculptors chisel stone? Why do fish swim? 

I doubt that if you ask any dedicated writer, they’ll tell you they write “for the money!” Most of us realize that writing will most likely not make us rich (unless of course, your name is J.K. Rowling). But it WILL feed the “fire in the belly”—the passion that drives us. 

In speaking to other writers and eavesdropping on a number of author posts, I’ve compiled a list of the top 10 reasons writers write, check it out:

Why do writers write?

1. To live. Writing is a source of life—a basic need to express oneself. It is what keeps us up at night.

2. To feel connected. To feel grounded. To feel centred.

3. To inform, educate, and give an audience something to enjoy.

4. To understand and be understood. To learn, and to heal—for the pen is mightier than the sword.

5. To rid the brain of “voices” (we writers do have a certain someone whispering in our ears, a muse perhaps).

6. To leave a legacy and make a mark in the world.

7. To be able to tell everyone they’re a writer (because writer’s are cool)

8. To give birth to a cast of characters and travel to far away places.

9. For the fun of it.

10. To live forever. To achieve immortality through the written words left behind… a bit vampish, yes.

According to Doris Lessing, writing is a delicious compulsion–one that perhaps only fellow writers can truly understand. And so, the sun rises. The grass grows. The stars come out at night. Bats fly. And I write. 

Fellow restless writers, why do YOU write?

Beckie

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