Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
— Philo (or Plato, or Others)
I love this quote. I hadn’t thought about it, in the past, but this sentiment is also applicable to the characters we create. Be kind to them, as they are carrying great burdens and fighting battles that we have imposed. Constant conflict and tension is exhausting, the least we can do is share a little bit of kindness.
If you are going to learn from other writers don’t only read the great ones, because if you do that you’ll get so filled with despair and the fear that you’ll never be able to do anywhere near as well as they did that you’ll stop writing. I recommend that you read a lot of bad stuff, too. It’s very encouraging.
This was shared at a great writing workshop last week:
If you are going to learn from other writers don’t only read the great ones, because if you do that you’ll get so filled with despair and fear that you’ll never be able to do anywhere near as well as they did that you’ll stop writing. I recommend that you read a lot of bad stuff, too. It’s very encouraging.
– Edward Albee
I couldn’t agree more. It was, after all, a terrible book that made me think, hey I can do something marginally better than this garbage! I’m still working on it – even trash takes time.
I love when, in fiction, authors write about authors, or in this case novelists. Check out Philip K. Dick in the “The Man in the High Castle,” brilliant:
“They know a million tricks, those novelists. Take Doctor Goebbels; that’s how he started out, writing fiction. Appeals to the base lusts that hide in everyone no matter how respectable on the surface. Yes, the novelist knows humanity, how worthless they are, ruled by their testicles, swayed by cowardice, selling out every cause because of their greed-all he’s got to do is thump on the drum, and there’s his response. And he laughing, of course, behind his hand at the effect he gets.”
My friend Sherryl over at Ebooks4writers.com shared the following link in her latest newsletter. Though it is easy to substitute learning to write for writing (i.e., procrastination), this link is awfully useful – especially on a Sunday afternoon. Enjoy!
I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career, that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide — Harper Lee.
Pulled this from an article on Writer’s Digest, where Allen Drury also said “set a schedule and stick to it.” In other words, stop searching for “writing advice” on Google and get writing (actually, I love reading writer’s advice on writing – it’s an addiction)!
I am a huge fan of Paulo Coelho. The Alchemist has resided in my top-five books for a very long time, and I don’t see it going anywhere anytime soon! A fan of his collected some of his writing tips, and I love the message: keep it simple, tell a story, and allow your readers the respect to make of it what they will.
Check out his top 8 writing tips (I’d reproduce them here, but I’m not sure he will answer my request to do so – so just follow the link, worth the 2 minutes for sure! http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2012/06/21/tips-for-writing/)
William C. Knott, in The Craft of Fiction, cogently observes that “anyone can write – and almost everyone you meet these days is writing. However, only the writers know how to rewrite, It is this ability alone that turn the amateur into a pro.” — taken from Writing Fiction, A Guide to Narrative Craft (Burroway and Stuckey-French).
I don’t think Mr. Knott could be any more
write right- because revision, I’m afraid, is a pain in the [____]. It takes an insane amount of determination and dedication; in most cases, it’s fueled by desire and rather than creativity. It is subject to constant battles against procrastination, this post just the latest piece in the onslaught. I remind myself that people, like the three mentioned authors above, have conquered this process before, and so, so can I. Look at the bright side, 80,000 is nothing when it comes to revision!