Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Suggestions for the Writing Life

I was going to title this Rules for the Writing Life, but then I realized I hate rules and people telling me what to do, which is why I love art. It's late, and I'm feeling reflective. I have a belly full of yummy Japanese food and a giant mug of water by my side and the house is quiet.

No drum rolls, please! You might wake my lizards. *grins*

Here are my suggestions for a happy writing life in no particular order:

1) Write what you want to write. Writing in one genre works really well for some writers, but not everyone. If you want to write a paranormal romance with hot, busty vamps and then a child's story about a flying dragon with superpowers the next day, do it! Go where your heart takes you.

2) Its good to write every day and to set goals, but if you don't meet your goal, don't beat yourself up. You're only human and sometimes you need to reboot.

3) Reboot by playing! Be a kid again, no matter how old or young you are right now. Go out and try something new. Explore! Be open to all the opportunities around you because you never know when you will be inspired to write.
4) Don't let the naysayers around you or inside you best you. Ignore them. Write! Don't worry about making money or if you can write a bestseller because all that worrying and those negative ideas in your head are a roadblock to personal success.

5) Be a reading beast! Devour every book you can. Try new genres you haven't explored. Revisit old ones you love and see how much it influences your writing. (I make a list of every book I read each year. That way I can look back and see the writing journey I have taken. It's very rewarding).

6) Don't let the rejection monster lurking in your closet terrorize you. So one editor didn't like your story! Big deal! There is more than one editor in the world.

7) Join a critique group. Find one that works with your schedule and best suits your style of writing. It doesn't matter if it is online or a group that meets in person, a fresh pair of eyes is a writer's best friend – especially an impartial one not emotionally invested in your story.

8) Take care of your body. If you don't feel good, you won't want to write. Try to get enough sleep. Play hard, but give yourself time to rest. Eat well. Boost your immune system and repeat!

9) And when you've completed this list, go back and do it all over again.

As always, happy writing and happy reading to all!

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