Archive for the ‘Keeping It Novel’ Category

That’s right. Ignore them all. At least to begin with.*

The first stage of writing anything is the first draft. At this point, the most important thing is to GET IT DOWN. You don’t want to be staring at the screen wondering about whether this sentence is in the passive voice, or whether this scene should go here, or here. You have to get all of that wonderful, fantastic, beautiful idea down on paper before it slips between your fingers like butter.

(I don’t know why you’re holding butter in your fingers. It’s a weird thing to do.)

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If the first rule of write club is ‘read, read and read some more’ – and it is – then the second is write, write and keep writing.

If you dream of being ‘a writer’, whatever that may mean to you, you must practice your skills. Whether you spill your thoughts onto the page for your own eyes only, in order to achieve inner clarity, or your visions include publishing success of the Rowling or King standard, it is imperative that you set aside time to hone your abilities.

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There is one thing, above all others, that every writer, be they un-published or a bestseller, aged or young, wise or naïve, must do, and that is to read.

As a carpenter must study a table to learn of its construction, or a surgeon must study anatomy to learn of its twists and turns, so a writer must read to learn how to construct sentences; how to use grammar and punctuation to best effect; how to convey the deepest emotion via something so flimsy as paper; how to draw a reader into a world complete with sight, scent and sound using only black ink on the white page; how to write. (more…)

For every one of the hundreds of thousands of writers out there, there are a hundred ways in which they are different from one another.

Some of us write by day, others by night; some using a computer at a pristine desk, others pen and paper while perched in a tree, and still others an antique typewriter, set up in a cosy corner of the attic. Many require utter silence, while for others the quiet is a deafening distraction, and it simply must be blaring rock and roll. Some writers drink tea, others coffee, and others follow Ernest Hemingway’s example: write drunk, edit sober. *  (more…)