Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Writers' Round Table

Writing advice. It's out there. Some of it good, some of it not so good. Today we are sharing the best advice we've gotten on our writing journeys. 

Hazel:  Always throw everything you’ve got at whatever you are writing. This is not permission to use hyperbole without restraint, rather to use every applicable idea and tool in your mental work basket every time. Don’t save a great metaphor for a later time, or a dramatic plot point for another story, or a wonderful twist, surprise, or subtle but powerful reference for the “even better story” you are going to write later. Make this story, the one you are crafting now, that better, even best story. Creativity feeds on itself. You will find that you will not run out of ideas by using your best ideas. Quite the contrary, your mental work basket, where creativity begins, will grow ever larger. You will have more exciting plots, more delightful twists and turns, more interesting characters to choose from than you ever thought possible just by using it all up every time.

Lana:   The best advice given to me came from my very first boss. My first job was working in a bakery for Mr. Cross, who lived up to his name very well. He gave me a long list of chores to do whenever there was a lull in costumer traffic. I suffer from a life-long daydreaming disorder, so Mr. Cross would often snap at me. “Get back to work!”  This has been the best advice in my writing endeavors. As with any difficult task, there have been unexpected obstacles, dead ends, and frustrations. Rough critique? Get back to work. Another rejection? Get back to work. Write something that stunk to high heaven? Get back to work. It really is the best advice.

Brian:  WRITE! Not to oversimplify, but sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in attending conferences, reading “how to” articles, searching for editors and agents, working on query letters, etc. and that’s if we have time left after work and family! The bottom line is: writers write. And the best way to improve as a writer is to write more. Just like reading a book about hitting is no substitute for batting practice – reading writing tips is no substitute for writing.

What advice helped you with your writing?

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