I like this site, and can get lost for hours, but nearly everything tagged writing is a favorite. Need a push, some inspiration, or someone to say what you’re thinking? Scroll through. And then keep writing.
I’m about halfway through my second draft of my novel. I figure I have about three more edits to go before it’s ready for the first round of readers. This is a slow process, people. But I’m not tired of these characters yet, so I’ll continue to slog.
“One does not ask if it’s worth it. We are people, there is no doubt, who exist solely insofar as we write, otherwise we don’t exist.”
Also, Buddha says rock on.
I believe I linked to some of these top 10 writing tips in a Friday post a few weeks ago. This one was in my email, found on the Writer’s Digest site:
10 pieces of writing advice from Sherman Alexie
10. Don’t Google search yourself.
9. When you’ve finished Google searching yourself, don’t do it again.
8. Every word on your blog is a word not in your book.
7. Don’t have any writing ceremonies. They’re just a way to stop you from writing.
6. Turn your readings into events. Perform and write with equal passion.
5. Read 1,000 pages for every one you try to write.
4. In fiction, research is overrated. But that means readers will write you correcting all of your minor biographical, geographical and historical errors. If you like, make those corrections in the paperback, but don’t sweat it too much.
3. Don’t lose the sense of awe you feel whenever you meet one of your favorite writers. However, don’t confuse any writer’s talent with his or her worth as a human being. Those two qualities are not necessarily related.
2. Subscribe to as many literary journals as you can afford.
1. When you read a piece of writing that you admire, send a note of thanks to the author. Be effusive with your praise. Writing is a lonely business. Do your best to make it a little less lonely.
A lot of these lists seem to have two pieces of advice in common, stated different ways: Stop procrastinating and read, read, read, read, read. Got it. I’ll be in the other room, reading …
These are both hanging on my computer at work:
A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus:
1. What am I trying to say?
2. What words will express it?
3. What image or idiom will make it clearer?
4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?
If you haven’t surprised yourself you haven’t written.
Any other favorites?
For me, the character is the story. All of human drama lies between “this is how life is” and “this is how the person idealizes their life, this is how they want their life to be.” The story lies inbetween.