Hot answers tagged

10

Most books I loved did not have any overt message. It was mostly by accident, and not the author's design, that I happened to find something that resonated with me. If you have a story that feels relevant enough to yourself that you want to invest the time and effort to write it, do so. If you write it well, others will enjoy it, too.


9

To be honest, until a story passes a certain threshold of completeness I don't think it can be determined if it is worthwhile or not. Pretty much every awesome plot can be summarized in a way that sounds dumb, and every lame plot can be made to sound interesting; so the storyline alone is not enough to decide. In fact, I think that none of the other elements ...


9

A story does not have to have a profound message that will change the life of everyone who reads it for it to be worth writing. There are many things that can make a story worthwhile. Sure, if you have some truly profound message that you want to relate, that's great. But really, the purpose of most stories is just to be interesting or entertaining. ...


8

I have been drawing for thirty years and published a few comic books. I draw reasonably well. When I was beginning to learn to draw – you can always get better, so you are never "accomplished" – I bought a whole lot of how-to-draw books. Strangely enough, following their advice to construct human figures by following their schemas of proportion never worked. ...


8

Spend 100 percent of your time learning the craft. Spend at least half of that learning by writing. (If this sounds overly pithy to you, please understand that my pithiness is an attempt to break through the thick skull of someone who desperately needs this advice: Me.)


6

Try it! If you enjoy writing, write. If you don't, stick with what you're doing, because it seems to work for you.


6

If you are not in it for the money, just make sure you enjoy telling the story. If it is not fun, don't bother.


5

Here are my three steps: The test of time: Keep the story in your head for a couple of weeks. Does it come back to you when you're not thinking about it? Is it becoming more and more appealing over time instead of losing its charm? If the answer is yes, move on to the next step. The test of execution. Write the story down. Did it work? Did the idea create ...


5

I don't remember who; but someone once compared the urge to write with a tumour. I understand that you'd get along just fine without having to put pen to paper. A couple hours of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto and you won't feel like delving deep into your soul to reach out for that story anymore. A few minutes of TV is always a better idea, right? Well, I ...


4

One thing I can say is, do not stress yourself out. That would be rule number one. Other than that, the medium does matter. Writing directly on a forum may put on the pressure for you. Best to dose it correctly, neither too high nor too low. Different subject matter will require different levels of effort. Writing a light-hearted message about an average ...


4

Summary: The timing will never be better. Give it a try, and learn from your mistakes. You are at the best time of your life to try writing professionally. As a new graduate with few responsibilities, you won't be trying to support a family on a minimal income. If you can stay rent free or low rent with parents or other relative, that's more money saved. ...


4

What's your goal? If your goal is to write, and reading what you "should" be doing made you stop writing, then stop reading that shit. Avoid whatever is an obstacle to your goal. That doesn't mean you can't learn the craft of writing, or study techniques or develop methods or use tools. But if you "let the perfect become the enemy of the good," then you ...


3

Write out a few and share them. You may be completely wrong about the market. A tale which "explores a character's path through life" but not much else happens is called a character study, and those are legitimately literature. (And movies sometimes too, c.f. A Room with a View.)


3

To learn how to start writing, the best advice I've ever read or heard is just to start writing, followed closely by take in as much content as you put out. Here's why: The best way to learn is to do it. So go do it. Practice. Try things. Experiment. You will do poorly and you will grow, and if it hurts all the better because that means you're going to ...


3

Take a minute to think about this: If someone knows so much about writing that they can write a brilliant book about it, why aren't they writing best selling novels or literary classics? Occasionally a brilliant writer will take the time to write about writing (I have a list of rules for short stories by Edgar Alan Poe), but mostly the books appear to ...


3

Honestly, reading helps you write in the same way studying cook books helps you cook better. If you read them a lot, you start to learn which spices are usually used with which different meats. You learn which vegetables take longer to sauté properly and what order you should put the food into the pan when you plan to sauté. You will learn that there are ...


2

I quit a job at one point to write full-time, and ended up writing far less when I had more time. Since then, my general advice to anyone is to establish the new career BEFORE leaving the old one. Scott Adams (creator of Dilbert) was already making millions off his strip before he left his former job as a cubicle-dweller (laid off, fwiw). As mentioned ...


2

So your experience so far has been that you have learned some theory but still find yourself unable to do it. And the solution you see is more of what you didn't find helpfull, that is, more theory? How do you learn anything? Do you learn walking by being told how to walk? Do you learn riding a bike by reading books about how to ride bikes? Do you learn ...


2

Check out Author Earnings. There are lots of debates about the collection, meaning, and significance of the data, but there's plenty of data.


2

It's very difficult to have hard answers for questions like this because there are way too many variables. "Traditional" publishing is not a monolith - there's a lot of difference between publishing with the Big 5 and publishing with a small e-publisher, and a lot of difference between publishing with a reputable, established e-publisher and a fly-by-night ...


2

First, good stories tend to keep pestering you until you put it down in words. Bad stories seem blessed with inertia. Second, I read a great book by Nanci Atwell about how to teach writing to students. She used the rule of "So What?" for students. Why is this story important or worth reading? New writers tend to write about things without having a clear ...


2

Why do you write? For fun? In that case every story is worthwhile as explored by most of the other answers. For readers? In that case read on. To improve yourself? In that case of course every story is worthwhile, but you need to act as if you are writing for readers. What do you wish to achieve? Now, personally I have always classified two different ...


2

It might help to keep a journal with your writing ideas in it. When you have an idea in your head, write down as much as you can about it. Then you would have the ability to go back to your journal and revisit your ideas. If you see something that you would like to write more about, go for it.


2

Natural refers to language that native speakers say or write. It is possible to write sentences which are not natural, by using words that wouldn't normally be used, or using word order that makes sense but is unusual, or by speaking/writing in a way that is unsuited to the situation. An example would be if a person always spoke as if they were dictating a ...


2

An important part of writing well is understanding your audience and using the words that will have the desired effect on them. If you're writing text messages to a sixteen year old, 'natural' language is going to be a lot more casual and text-speak-ish than if you were writing them to someone unused to the medium and more practised at long-form writing. ...


2

How about a sailing trip? A small crew or even a single man sailing across a wide body of water, like the Pacific? That might provide sufficient time away from land, and sufficient isolation from communications, to provide what you need. Those seem to be the biggest problems - overcoming the invasive presence of communication, and the speed of modern ...


2

If the moments of that events are jumbled and chaotic, then write it down that way. crashing sounds oh my god what just is that smoke? people running my heartrate starts to spike the ground is thrumming my legs are jelly I need to get out of here push you idiot get out of my way that is smoke what's burning need to run I need to run You can ...


2

Use your imagination. I mean, your imagination should be informed by experiences you've actually had and remembered, but you expand and explore and combine these experiences using your imagination, not your memories. By 'imagination' I don't mean wild flights of fancy. Don't throw a unicorn into a car crash scene just because your imagination takes you ...


2

There is always a risk of copy being made (some outright, some "mashed up"). But you'll need proofreaders. You'll need some peer reviews to be able to attract good quality readers / publishers. Some basic measures must be taken though - like distributing protected electronic versions, delivering parts of book rather than whole book, etc. All said, a bit of ...


2

Im not so sure your issue is with the content of your paragraph, people generally only donate money to causes they believe in, your interest in buying gadgets to help in your education is admirable, but you have to look from the users perspective. What are they getting out of it. When people donate to cancer research or homes for retired seeing eye dogs, ...



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