People often ask me for writing tips. They want to know how I can make myself sit in front of a computer day after day, keying in words, deleting them and starting all over again until I have a finished article or book.
The answer is that I like writing. And fortunately, I seem to be genetically disposed to be being disciplined and focused. And it doesn’t hurt that I’ve learned to take rejection as a sign – not of failure – but that I can improve my work to strengthen its appeal.
The best piece of advice I can give anyone is: sit down and write. Talking and thinking about writing are fine up to a point but, sooner or later, you have to put words to paper or on a computer screen.
But every writer – including me — struggles from time to time. It might be difficult to access that necessary bit of research, the words might not flow in a cohesive and engaging manner and distractions are often only a glance or mouse click away.
Here are a few things I’ve found beneficial to the writing process.
-Read a lot, write a lot and then read some more.
-Know your theme and stick to it (mostly).
-Use active voice.
-Pound out the first draft wtih little regard for puncuation and spelling.
-Write as if you’re telling a story to your best friend.
-Create and keep a regular writing routine.
-Have a quiet place to work where you will not be disturbed.
-Learn to edit your writing.
-Listen to your intuition to determine what works and what doesn’t.
-Enjoy the process – even the struggles.
The above might motivate you to put your fingers to the keyboard or you might have some other ideas or tricks of the trade. If so, I’d love to hear about them.