Want to Be a Writer? These Tips Will Help to Make Your Dream Come True

By Harriet Hodgson

Last week I met a writer who had one book published. Since his book sells well, and he speaks to groups across the country, he thought about writing a second book. But he didn’t take action on this idea. “Writing is too much work,” he admitted, “so I just revised my existing book.”

This writer speaks the truth. Whether it is a novel, mystery, history, self-help, poetry, children’s book, sports book, or another genre, writing is hard work. You also have to deal with submission guidelines, editors, deadlines, and marketing. In short, your work isn’t done when your book is done.

Writers also have to deal with comments from readers. During my 35+ years as a writer I have received compliments and thoughtless comments. One man was disappointed when one of my books was released. “I was going to write that,” he complained. However, I researched the topic, spent weeks on the outline, spent months on writing, and submitted the manuscript to publishers.

I acted upon my book idea and he did not.

Many people have approached me and said they wanted to write a book. When I ask what they are working on at the moment, however, the answer is always the same — nothing. I have never met a would-be writer who was working on anything. By definition, writers are supposed to write. If you want your book published, you need to create a body of work.

Volunteering may also help you reach your dream of becoming a writer. You may serve as volunteer editor of your church newsletter, for example, or write articles for the public library newsletter. I wrote a brochure for a local community group and you could do something similar. Over time, your volunteer efforts will become a body of work and prove, without a doubt, that you are a writer.

Community education and college courses may also help you to achieve your dream. Taking courses proves, yet again, that you are serious about becoming a writer. Keep a file or files of everything you write to track your progress. If you don’t have a resume, now is the time to create one. List courses, volunteer efforts, and completed manuscripts on your resume.

These tips helped me to achieve my dream of becoming a writer and I hope they help you.

Write every day. You may write letters, blog postings, short articles, or work on a book outline.
Find your genre. This may take some time, but keep at it.
Research publishers in your genre. Never submit a manuscript to a publisher that you have not researched.
Work on a one-page query letter. Put it away and take it out in a few weeks. Make any revisions you think are necessary.
Create a resume, including all of your volunteer writing positions.
Update your resume regularly.
Keep a file of submissions and rejects. Hopefully, this file will eventually include acceptances.
Be persistent. If you don’t believe in you, others will not either.
Consider self-publishing. In this sagging economy many writers are going directly to self-publishing and the Kindle or Nook. Before you sign on the dotted line, however, investigate the publisher and read reviews on the Internet.

Copyright 2012 by Harriet Hodgson http://www.harriethodgson.com

Harriet Hodgson is the author of 31 published books, including six grief resources. For the first time in her writing career, two of her books were released simultaneously — “Happy Again! Your New and Meaningful Life After Loss” and “Help! I’m Raising My Grandkids: Grandparents Adapting to Life’s Surprises.” Please visit her website and learn more about this busy author and grandmother.

Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Want-to-Be-a-Writer?-These-Tips-Will-Help-to-Make-Your-Dream-Come-True&id=7163352] Want to Be a Writer? These Tips Will Help to Make Your Dream Come True

Word Clay: 5 Steps to Create a Book From a Pile of Words

By Benjamin C Andrews

Writing a book is a challenging task to undertake. Like any other form of art, it takes time, hard work and dedication. Looking at it from another angle though can help put the job into perspective. One way to look at it is building a figurine from a pile of clay. Writing and sculpting are remarkably similar, which isn’t surprising since they are both art forms. Knowing the proper way to approach an art medium will help you create the most fantastic works of art possible.

1. Gather your materials.

You can’t build anything if you don’t have the materials. Gather up your ideas so you know what you have to work with. Dictionaries, computer, pen and paper, everything that you personally need to actually start putting your thoughts down and beginning the project.

2. Create the rough shape.

Like building figurines out of clay, you begin with a rough shape. For writing, that rough shape is going to be the first draft(s). More likely than not, literary gold won’t jump right through your fingers with every sentence you write the first time. None the less, you need somewhere to start, and it’s much easier to craft those amazing scenes when you have a foundation to build upon.

3. Begin adding in the details.

Once you’ve got the rough draft written, it’s time to look at your word sculpture, and begin bringing it to life. Details are the backbone of a book, and without ample description, readers will have no idea what you are trying to tell them. Just like with clay figurines, the details take time and a delicate touch. A careless thought or motion may scar the piece instead of bringing out its beauty.

4. Check it over and over again.

By this step, you’ve put a lot of work into the piece. Whether you are writing a book or creating a sculpture, you’ve taken the time to create it, and imparted a bit of your heart and soul to its creation. After all that work, it wouldn’t make any sense to just hope it’s good. Look it over, again and again. Keep making adjustments, whether they are finite or massive, until you see what you intended at the start.

5. Finalize it.

Part of any project is reaching the end. Once you’ve reached that point, it’s time to tie the bow on this puppy. Put any final touches on the project, and put it together in any way necessary so it is ready to be presented to others. Sometimes this can be the most challenging step. It can be hard to decide when something is truly done. This is also one of the most gratifying steps. Seeing your work finished and ready for others to view makes the entire project worth while.

About the author:

I’m Benjamin C. Andrews, an author sharing my writing knowledge with others. Visit http://magicjarpublishing.blogspot.com/ for more writing tips and tricks, and other quality information.

Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Word-Clay:-5-Steps-to-Create-a-Book-From-a-Pile-of-Words&id=6561393] Word Clay: 5 Steps to Create a Book From a Pile of Words

10 Ways to Boost Writing Potential

Imagine taking your writing to the next level and finding new ways to boost your inner creative potential quickly and easily.

The latest report from the Creative Competitor  ‘10 Ways to Boost Writing Potential’ is yours free when you become a subscriber to the Creative Competitor Weekly! Don’t worry, there are no hidden charges and you can cancel your free subscription at any time although we hope that you won’t. Plus you get to keep your free report just for signing up.

If you want to know what other writing related freebies or special offers you can get simply by signing up to the newsletter that is filled with writing tips and articles each and every week, take a look here:

Memory Loss Fiction Competition Winner

 

1st Prize:  £150.00 Eve Green

 2nd Prize: £ 100.00 S. Denby

3rd Prize:  £   75.00 Chris Foster

The Ravages of Time

 

“Are you the Doctor? “ The voice was wobbly and laden with confusion.

I handed her the cup of tea, carefully making sure that her trembling fingers had gripped the cup firmly. “No, are you expecting one?”

She shook her head as confusion swept over her, “I don’t think I’m ill”

“I don’t either,” I agreed “You look in good health to me”

She leaned forward in a clandestine manner, “It’s just my flamin’ memory dear. So annoying, for example, I can’t find my glasses today and I need them if I’m going to do my knitting.”

“They are on your head, here….” I took them from her silken grey curls and handed them to her and she whooped in delight.

“Well now, fancy that, I looked everywhere…or, at least I think I did”

“What are you knitting?” I asked looking at the beautiful green wool in the basket by her wrinkled stocking legs.

“It’s a surprise, a jumper for my daughter”

I glanced at the cover of the pattern and saw the image of a young girl “How old is your daughter?”

She hesitated for a moment, brow furrowed as she dug deep for the answer, “I am terrible, I can’t remember exactly….I think she is ten or twelve. My dear, time does pass so quickly and children are never children for long. Do you have any?”

I shook my head, with a recent divorce and approaching my fortieth birthday, the likelihood for the patter of tiny feet weren’t good. I had never worried about it before but now, the years, empty and alone stretched ahead of me. I swallowed as a wave of emotion rose from the depths of my belly. “No children” I whispered.

We sat in comfortable silence for a bit and I watched the buzz of activities around the room. Nurses busied themselves pouring out drinks, administering drugs and getting their patients to stand for a few moments so as to keep the blood circulating to prevent sore areas developing and I admired their care and consideration. As a solicitor, our jobs could not have been further apart and yet for all of my lack of care, I was paid so much more. It didn’t seem fair.

 As I broke off my reverie, I noticed how peaceful she looked now that she was asleep. Her glasses were at an angle across her nose and her chest rose and fell with shallow breaths. She looked so tiny that it broke my heart.

Today wasn’t a good day for her. The Alzheimer’s had claimed a little more of her and there was no point staying, plus I had an overwhelming urge to escape and feel the fresh air on my skin. I don’t know if it was hot in the room or just that emotion was ripping me apart but I needed to get out of the care home. I stood up quietly, trying not to wake her up and walked away.

“There you are dear, hope you weren’t sneaking off? I was only having a little nap”

I turned to look at her quizzically.

She yawned as she struggled to sit up straight and straightened her glasses“Well come and give  your mother a kiss for goodness sake, I’ve been waiting ages, although a very nice lady kept me company for a while…or did I dream that?”

She held out her arms and I bent down and hugged her, struggling to hold back the tears. She was back, who knew for how long, but time was precious with her and I was only too glad to have my mum back with me because I missed her. I really missed her.

Writing Tip of the Week 11

If you wish to be a productive and successful writer, don’t just start writing the moment an idea pops into your mind, let the idea germinate for a while first. Daily household chores can be a bore but if you let your imagination run riot during those times, play with your initial idea and tease it into growth, you will be maximising your creativity plus creating a more solid storyline as a result.

Writing Tip of the Week 4

‘Points of View’ can be difficult for a writer, but quite simply, it is about looking through someone else’s eyes and capturing their thoughts, feelings, dialogue and expressing this to the reader but here is a quick project to help you out:

Think of an argument or disagreement that you will have had with someone close to you, recall how you felt at that time. Write down the article but from your own point of view, this should not be too difficult because your own emotions were involved.

Once you have finished this, write the same argument but from the other person’s point of view so that you try to capture how they would have been feeling. Try to understand their frustration at getting their point across to you. You can use dialogue and descriptive writing, but make the words flow naturally.

Writing Tip of the Week 1

If you are applying for writing jobs, don’t make it a static proposal, give a little of yourself and allow your potential client to see the real you. Being professional is great but it’s still important to build rapport with a client. Writing jobs don’t just land in your lap and you are far more likely to secure that writing job if they know they are working with someone who is easy to communicate with.

 


Writing – It Can Seriously Take Over Your Life

If like me, you are passionate about your writing and you think about it constantly, your brain can be on constant buzz alert and as a result, it can be hard to switch that level of creativity off.

I have heard some people say that writing should not consume too big a part of your life but how can it not when you  have trained your brain to recognise creative opportunities as they occur? My brain literally digests snippets of conversations that can be used to improve dialogue, it absorbs events as they occur around me and if I start people watching, I get an influx of possibilities through body language, movement and facial expressions. As fiction echoes life, I get masses of ideas on a daily basis and ok, sometimes too many for me to be able to focus on.

I personally think that if writing forms an integral part of your own make-up, then why fight it? For example, I am going to visit family in France in about three weeks time and although I am going with a friend, I have warned her that I will be taking my laptop with me (she did pull a face but knows me so well that it was pretty much a given)and I know that I will have to do some writing over there as I can’t imagine not doing any for a week. Think of the withdrawal symptoms! I love fiction but lately have had to spend a large amount of time writing articles but know equally that there will be so many potential non-fiction ideas whilst over there and who knows, I may even do some travel writing as a result.

Whilst writing may seem like some sort of addiction to the non-creative, it brings an innate feeling of relaxation too and a way of escaping the sometimes doom and gloom of reality even for a little while and writing generates so many opportunities to stretch yourself in new creative areas. What other profession offers so much variety?  I could be writing a travel article in the morning whilst sat admiring stunning views of the Pyrenees, dream up ideas for short stories whilst sipping coffee in a cafe at lunch time and may curl up in the evening whilst planning my next ebook –aided by a large glass of wine of course.

I love the fluidity of the writing life and if writing has taken over my life, I say, bring it on.

What about you?


You Can Make Money Writing

Websiteby Annette Young

Through my work as a writing tutor, I am aware just how many talented writers there are out there and whilst all are in various stages of development, many could make money writing articles or by selling their short stories but I have noticed that many people have a real lack of self-confidence regarding their creative abilities.  

I do remember how difficult it can be to make that jump from amateur to professional status and it is a scary leap of faith in your own abilities but if you don’t do it and trust in yourself, how will you ever succeed in your writing?

First of all, it’s important to consider what you want to achieve with your writing and hand on heart, be honest  if you want to make money writing or whether  you are happy to just enjoy the creative process.

If you  do really want to make money from writing then you need to put yourself and your writing on the line.

I would suggest in the first instance that you earn a few published writing credits whether paid or unpaid as this will give you invaluable experience. Try free  article writing for directories or by offering your services to any website like the Creative Competitor. This will provide a good stepping stone in terms of motivation and self-belief, provide a few published writing credits and then once you are sure that you can write with conviction and confidence, then you are ready to start generating query letters.

Just remember that writing professionally means putting in the practice first, don’t skimp on this aspect as the more you do, the better you will become. Writing should be second nature and an important part of your life. I have to admit I am addicted to writing,it’s a passion, a way of life and if you feel the same, are ready to commit to your goals, then you really can make money writing!

Could You Become A Freelance Writer?

Editing

by Annette Young

So you’d like to become a freelance writer? You may have heard that it is a great way to supplement your income or perhaps you have a burning ambition to become a full-time writer, whatever your goals, it is important to realise that the freelancing lifestyle isn’t for everyone and to be successful you need to be prepared.

If you become a freelance writer, planning ahead is vital. It is likely that you will work longer hours, earn less and have more demands on you than in any current job, especially in the early stages of your new career. I would always suggest that you put a stack of cash aside first if you decide that you want to write full-time as it can take a while to build up your writing credits initially.

 The questions to ask yourself are:

1. Can you write well? If your English skills are poor then you will find it difficult to be successful

2. Do you have enough money coming in or put by to cover for times when earnings are minimal?

3. Are you self motivating?

4. Are you determined to succeed against the odds?

5. How thick skinned are you? Rejections can hurt.

 This may all sound like I’m trying to put potential writers off freelancing and this couldn’t be further from the truth as I live and breathe writing myself. For me, it’s the most wonderful job to have and irrespective of the long hours, the rejections or the sometimes erratic pay, I really wouldn’t want to be doing anything else. It’s just important to not rush in without learning the ropes first. Become a freelance writer by all means, just make sure that you are an informed one and ready to take on the challenges of the writing world.