Sunday, February 9, 2014

Advice to would-be writers/novelists

A journalist asked me what advice I'd give to new writers. My answers to this question have remained fairly consistent through the years, especially when it comes to reading and setting goals.

Here's the question I was asked and how I answered:

What five tips can you offer for readers who are thinking about writing as a career?
1)      Never give up. Rejections will come. They just mean you’re doing your job. Sometimes the writing will flow, at other times it will be so hard you wonder why you thought you could do it. You can. Keep writing.

2)      Set goals, and diligently work toward them.

3)      Read. Everything. Even the things you think you aren’t interested in or don’t like. You learn from reading both good writing and bad writing. Read in your genre. Read in a genre you’re not that interested in. Read the classics. Read about writing and writers. Read the Bible as literature. Read poetry. Read self-help books and articles. Read magazines and newspapers and cereal boxes. Just read.

4)      Live your life. From life comes experience and curiosity and challenges and mostly life provides ideas. Ideas can be turned into stories.

5)      Never give up on yourself or your dream. Be encouraged … and keep writing!

What advice do you have or what's the best advice you've ever been given? Post below.

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