Inspired to find your inner voice yet? As we continue to read and fill our free time with escape and journeys from gifted authors let’s take hold of our own stories; let’s capture moments noteworthy and share them with the world. Here’s how…
In the first part to For The Love Of Writing we discussed a few writing tips to aid in preparation. In part 2, we are discovering practices and projecting positive moods to engage and to stay in the zone.
#1. Shift your creative energy
Photo: Dave Gray
“Develop interests in life as you see it; in people, things, literature, music – the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself.” – Henry Miller, American novelist
#2. Write a journal
Explore anything upsetting you, like:
Why am I struggling with my writing?
What’s happening in my life that I’m so hurt, angry, disappointed?
What do I need to differently (on and off the page) to get back to a better place?
“After my husband died, I could not write much (fiction) – I could not concentrate. I was too exhausted most of the time even to contemplate it. But I did take notes – not for a journal, or diary, of this terrible time. I did not think I would ever survive this interlude.” – Joyce Carol Oates, National Book Award winner
#3. Help someone else
Focusing solely on yourself just magnifies your woes.
Be of service to others: hand out a meal at a soup kitchen, take your elderly neighbor’s garbage out for her, have coffee with a friend struggling his own problems. Pay it forward.
Your generosity will thank you with renewed passion.
“That’s what I consider true generosity: You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.” – Simone De Beauvoir, French writer
Below you’ll find a list of essential writing habits that will benefit your writing skills. Try introducing one habit into your routine each month. By the end of the year, you’ll be well on your way to becoming an expert in all things writing.
- Establish a writing schedule and write daily if possible: Whether you write for three hours a day or fifteen minutes a day, daily writing is the most critical of writing habits. It’s better to write for fifteen or twenty minutes every day than to binge for five or six hours over the weekend, but if you can establish a daily writing schedule with longer sessions on weekends, then all the better!
- Don’t forget to read: I can’t stress how obvious it is when a writer is not well-read. Lack of reading will be apparent in every sentence. The importance of reading cannot be overstated: read as much and as often as you can.
- Finish what you start: One of the worst habits a writer can acquire is to never finish anything. Shiny new ideas are always tempting us away from our current projects. Don’t give in to temptation! Unless a project is absolutely going nowhere, wrap it up before you move on to the next one. Otherwise, you’ll end up in a vicious cycle and have nothing to show for all the writing you’ve done.
- Show your work: Speaking of finishing what you start — once it’s done, share it with others. Post a scene on your blog, send a poem around to a few friends, round up some beta readers and let them assess your project and help you improve it. And if you’d like to be a professional author, always keep your eye on the goal: publishing your work to the marketplace.
- Know your craft and industry: As a writer, it’s important to understand things like grammar, spelling, and punctuation as well as the importance of editing and polishing your work before you show it around. It’s just as important to familiarize yourself with the industry — from publishing to marketing. Make it your business to understand the craft and trade by working good habits into your schedule: edit everything you write, consult grammar and style guides when necessary, learn to properly format your documents, study the publishing industry, and make sure you understand the many ways that authors can market their work to a reading audience.
Writing templates anyone?
If you have any suggestions, please share with us..