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A writer’s greatest fear

It’s Monday morning. You sit down on your comfortable chair and turn on the computer. Suddenly the fear starts to run through your spine. You find yourself in front of an empty and eternal white page… A page that seems to have no end. The ideas that seemed to be on your mind are now gone. You don’t know how to start. Maybe you know what you want to write about, but you have no idea of how to kickstart it.

Time begins to run. Seconds turns into minutes, and minutes turns into hours. And you decide to close the computer and surrender. And when you are about to sleep you get the feeling that you’re not a good writer. That writing is not your thing. So you quit. And the talent goes away with the day.

This sounds familiar? Well, this is one of a writer’s greatest mistakes. And we are not talking about the white page; we are talking about the quitting. The most challenging thing a writer will always confront is an empty page. So our advice is: Don’t get frustrated. The thing that you don’t know is that fear is normal. And one key to unlock that frustration is to write. Yes, ALL YOU NEED IS WRITING, as Stephen King and others famous writer have told.

At the beginning, it doesn’t matter how you start. Don’t feel pressured just because people tell you that the beginning is one of the most important parts. Yes, maybe it is, but when you are in the initial steps of becoming a writer, you first need to break the ice with the empty page. The fear itself would never be gone, but you will learn to handle it more with time. So sit down, turn on your computer, and start writing the first thing that comes to your mind. Perhaps using a “writing prompt” will help you; just bear in mind that a writer’s major creativity spark comes from constraints: and even in the infamous writer’s block you can find inspiration.

Once you start, everything becomes easier, the ideas will start flowing by themselves. And maybe on the middle of your writing you can allow yourself to change the beginning. Sometimes we just need to know the end, to go back to the beginning. And the other key is to think and let your personality express that thinking into words. Do not hesitate about the words you use. Write the ones that identify you; fall in love with them and leave the editing for later. Let the talent make its own role. The more you write, the better writer you will become.

Jan. 18, 2017, 3:38 p.m. 0 Report Embed 10

10 writing tips from Ray Bradbury

It’s not just tips to gain knowledge from the master. It is a memory of the passed experience and a lifestyle of one of the greatest writers in the twentieth century. In this article you will find Ray Bradbury’s writing advices (how to become a writer) from his speech in 2001 on Writer’s Symposium.

Don’t start out writing novels. They take too much of your time. Begin your writing life instead by publishing“a hell of a lot of short stories,” as many as one per week. The more, the better. Take a year to do it; he claims that it simply isn’t possible to write 52 bad short stories in a row. Bradbury worked in such pace until the age of 30 to write his first novel, «Fahrenheit 451».

You may love them, but you can’t be them. Bear that in mind when you inevitably attempt, consciously or unconsciously, to imitate your favorite writers. Young Bradbury idols were such authors as H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Arthur Conan Doyle, and L. Frank Baum.

Examine “quality” short stories. Bradbury studied the works of several authors as Roald Dahl, Guy de Maupassant, and the lesser-known Nigel Kneale and John Collier. Anything in the New Yorker today doesn’t make his cut, since he finds that their stories have “no metaphor.”

Don't stuff your head. To accumulate the intellectual building blocks of these metaphors, he suggests a course of bedtime reading: one short story, one poem (Pope, Shakespeare, and Frost, not modern “crap”), and one essay. These essays should come from a diversity of fields, including archaeology, zoology, biology, philosophy, politics, and literature. “At the end of a thousand nights,” so he sums it up, “Jesus, you’ll be full of stuff!”

Get rid of friends who don’t believe in you. Do they make fun of your writerly ambitions? Don't hesitate and “fire them” if needed.

«Write with joy. Writing is not a serious business. If a story starts to feel like work, scrap it and start one that doesn’t. I want you to envy me my joy.»

Don’t plan on making money. Bradbury's wife, took a vow of poverty. Their first car a couple could afford after 10 years of marriage, and he still never got around to picking up a driving license.

List of 20 things, that you love and hate. Then write 10 stories about things you like, and “kill” the black ten — also by writing about them. Do the same with your fears.

Just type any old thing that comes into your head. To break down any creative blockages will help a “word association”, since “you don’t know what’s in you until you test it.”

Remember, you are wrinting to one person only that will come up and tell you, “I love you for what you are doing.” If you can't achieve it then you are writing for someone to come up and tell you, “You are not that nuts like people say.”

Dec. 6, 2016, midnight 1 Report Embed 10

What To Do When You Run Out Of Inspiration

If you thinking of writing a novel series, but in front of you there is still a blank piece of paper – you need to pull yourself together and get down to action.

Here is how you write - just sit down and start writing. This how you shouldn’t write - waiting for the right mood when you will be ready, when the story gets solid and overgrows with details, only then you sit down and start writing.

But sometimes there are days when you are trying to write and realize that there is nothing to say. What if nothing changes and the page will remain empty? In this kind off moments remember these simple ways to restart your creativity process.

1. Answer the question

Do you have a burning question that strikes your mind? Does it concern other people lives? Help to understand them. Help to understand yourself. It doesn’t matter what the question is, just choose one. Even if you don’t know how to answer it, in a process you will be able to get to the solution.

“Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.”
E. L. Doctorow

2. Write to one person

Stephen King recommends writing to your ideal reader. Targeting every single reader at once won’t let you reach your unique audience. You won’t be able to concentrate. It is hardly a coincidence that books that came from the depths of the history are the letters to a single person: “Letters To A Young Poet” by R. M. Rilke, “Epistulae morales ad Lucilium” by Seneca, “Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius. If you find it difficult to start, open your email and compose a new message. Add one person in the “To” field and start writing.

3. Inspiration can come at the strangest time in unexpected places

Trust your intuition. Sometimes inspiration can strike unexpectedly. When it happens grab it and hold with all your strength. Almost every discovery starts with a tiny whisper, try to focus and listen.

4. Don’t wait for inspiration to come

It’s a trap! William Faulkner once was asked a question, whether he wrote by inspiration or a habit, Faulkner replied: “I only write when I am inspired. Fortunately I am inspired at nine o’clock every morning.” Do your thing even if you don’t feel inspired. Weird as it might sound this is a fastest way to get inspiration.

5. Write from the heart

Your thoughts may seem close to thoughts of other people. Write about what touches you deep down. And in your feelings some one else will definitely find something familiar.

6. Take your readers to a journey they will never forget

The reader wants to experience new places. He wants a conflict and he wants it to be resolved. He wants to know that happens in the end. The reader wants a story. Put it all together and give it to him.

7. Remember about the driving in the night

Another great tip from Doctorow: “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” Sounds scary, all you need to do it start writing. 

Dec. 3, 2016, 8:14 p.m. 0 Report Embed 8

6 Writing Tips from Anne Lamott

Anne Lamott’s “Bird by Bird” is a real treasure trove. Firstly, Anne wrote a very interesting story about her life and secondary, this book is full of useful tips for writer that can be applied in practice.

Here are 6 tips from the book “Bird by Bird” by Anne Lamott that I consider most useful and interesting book for writers. Enjoy!

You won’t always like what you have written.

In nine cases out of ten you won't like what you wrote. Unfortunately, there is no way to become a better writer. In order to improve your skills you will need to write a lot. You won’t be always happy with the result, but it’s okay. Don’t stop keep writing.

To write a good story – tell the truth.

It seem that writing the truth is very easy, because it’s way more difficult to think of an idea, give it a form and write. In practice it’s not the same. Telling the truth in an interesting and understandable to the reader way turns out to be about as easy and pleasurable as bathing a cat.

If you don’t know what to write about, start with childhood.

Write from the very beginning. Write about the time when you got to know yourself and world around you. If your childhood was troubled it will be somber story, if good and full of happiness its will be bright and colorful story. However, it doesn’t matter how was your childhood, at the beginning a result of your work still won’t be satisfying, all you have to do is to start.

"Anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information about life to last him the rest of his days."
Flannery O’Connor

When you start remembering all the details of your childhood, you will realize that there is so much material that you don’t even know how to put it up all together. In this case, narrow the score and write about specific events, time lines or people.

Write everyday at the same time.

Lamott says that this kind of ritual will train your subconscious to engage in creative activities. Sit down at 10 a.m. or 8 p.m. or 3 a.m. whenever you like. In your first hour probably you will look at blank page or screen of the laptop like an idiot. Then you start moving from side to side, cracking fingers, stretching, petting a dog or biting lips. Only then you might start writing your story. Just hold up till this moment.

Start with small paragraphs.

If you got an idea of your masterpiece, but got lost due to the size of your work. Write small. Don’t be afraid to take a pause and relax a bit.

"Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way."
E. L. Doctorow

You don't have to see where you're going, you don't have to see your destination or everything you will pass along the way. You just have to see two or three feet ahead of you. Same thing in writing don’t try to master everything at once. Write in small parts and you won’t get crazy.

Perfectionism is an enemy of the writer.

The desire to make everything perfect will chase you all the time. On one hand it is good thing, but on the other hand perfectionism kills creativity in the text. While trying to get rid off unnecessary words, you will be shrinking and changing text until it becomes lifeless. Know the measure.

Source: A. Murahovskiyi

Nov. 28, 2016, 2:53 p.m. 0 Report Embed 8
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