That Creative Time of Day

By S. B. Redd

My house is usually at it quietest between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m. More than likely, my daughter has fallen asleep by default after talking for countless hours on the phone or spending time on some social network, and my wife, despite her tendency of being a light sleeper, has entered into a deep sleep pattern.

As for me, it’s my most productive time of day. It’s been that way for decades. I’ll go as far as to say that it’s probably a productive time of day for you if you’re a writer or creative arts is your passion.

Think about it. Unless you’re working a job that requires your productivity at that time of night, what person in his or her right mind will be up with a pen or notepad, or pecking away on a computer keyboard? But there is something universally magical about that time of day. All of a sudden, thoughts and ideas begin to make better sense. The words seem to flow better. That creative concept all of a sudden seems clearer.

For years, I merely made light of one of my most notable achievements in my former profession as a newspaper reporter coming from a burst of creative energy that I experienced about 2:30 a.m. The story that I turned in later that day was a rough draft. It went over so well that there were virtually no revisions. That same rough draft actually earned me top national honors for best news story in my newspaper circulation category.

The first time I really shared this experience among other book authors was while I hosted my former talk show, in 2009. My featured guest that night was singer/songwriter Brenda Russell, whose work has been covered by other artists: “Get Here” by Oleta Adams, “Please Pardon Me (You’re A Friend of Mine)” by Rufus featuring Chaka Kahn, and “If Only for One Night” by Luther Vandross are just a few that went on to become mega hits.

Ms. Russell understood exactly where I was coming from once I mentioned the inexplicable magic that seems to occur during that timeframe.

A good time to write, she said. Often, it’s the first thing that we write is a strong idea.

Since then, I’ve come in contact with other authors who seem to thrive during those early morning hours. They also attribute it to being a time of the day when they’re best able to concentrate on their craft and summon much of their creative energy.

I suppose only time will allow me to conclude if any of the work I’ve now done as an editor, author, or publisher might result in some major critical acclaim or a noted best-seller. Meanwhile, I continue to peck away on my keyboard in the relative solitude in my house: it’s also the only time that my wife and daughter aren’t interrupting me.

S.B. Redd is the publisher and creative coordinator at MavLit Publishing. He is also an editor, published author, and an award-winning former print journalist. Visit his websites at http://www.mavlitpublishing.blogspot.com or http://www.maverick-books.com

Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?That-Creative-Time-of-Day&id=6541871] That Creative Time of Day

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Writing Tip of the Week 22

Don’t get left behind with what is hot in the publishing industry. Read the latest best-sellers to see just what publishers’ are interested in right now and plan your writing to tie in with those hot, topical works of fiction. Whilst you should never emulate, if there is a trend brewing, you can be one step ahead of other writers.

Writing Tip of the Week 21

Writing can be pretty isolating especially if those around you have no interest in your creative pursuits. Get a writing buddy by joining a local writing group, college class or by setting up an ad on a writing forum. Your buddy doesn’t have to live in the same area but you can inspire each other by email. You can even do joint projects together if your styles compliment each other and this can really spur you on to great things creatively.

Writing Tip of the Week 20

Self Promotion is vital if you wish your novel to succeed. Finding a unique angle that can bring your novel before the masses is crucial but not easy.  It can help if you develop a strategy using your own strengths and experiences so that you feel comfortable and confident with any angle that you take.

Create a fan page on Facebook, use Twitter profusely and make any other social networking sites work for you. Once you start getting the word out about your novel, this process will really start to become easier. Use the local press to help promote your creative venture, get interviewed, talk loudly and proudly about why people should read your book.

Eventually, people will start to listen.

Writing Tip of the Week 19

You can think and plan your writing, create wonderful complex plots and imaginative characters, but there is no substitute for the actual art of writing. You need to write, write, write each and everyday if you wish to become successful.

Why Anchor Text Could Be The Most Important Aspect Of SEO

Copyright (c) 2011 Lee Dobbins

Anchor text is perhaps one of the most important aspects of
Search Engine Optimization but it is also one of the least talked
about.

This one element of SEO is important to understand because it can
help your page get ranked for a target keyword and also help you
evaluate your competition more precisely.

The latter is critical and, in fact, if you don’t take anchor
text backlinks into proper consideration when looking at the
competition for a keyword you could be missing out on some hidden
gems that are easy to rank for.

What Is Anchor Text?

Anchor text is the hyperlinked text you see on a webpage. It is
the visible words that you can click to take you to another page.
Anchor text html code looks like this: <xmp><a
href=”Your” _mce_href=”http://www.yoursite.com”>Your”>http://www.yoursite.com”>Your Anchor Text</a></xmp>

On most websites, you typically see this as blue text that is
underlined and when you click on it with your mouse, you are
taken to the corresponding url.

How Bloggers Use Anchor Text

Bloggers and website owners use anchor text naturally to point to
other pages on their website as well as pages on other sites that
they find relevant to what they are blogging about. You’ve
probably even done this yourself when writing a post where you
referenced another post on your site, an affiliate product or
even a post on another site.

Usually a blogger will use a phrase that indicates what the page
is about in the anchor text, as opposed to a url, so that the
sentence reads correctly.

The anchor text in these links helps both the visitor and the
search engine spiders figure out what the ‘linked to” page is
about.

How Search Engines Use Anchor Text

Search engines use anchor text to help them figure out what the
hyperlinked page is about. So, as you can see, getting anchor
text backlinks with relevant phrases in the anchor text is pretty
important if you want the search engines to rank you for a
particular keyword phrase.

In fact, anchor text is such an important factor in ranking a
page that pages can rank for a keyword phrase even when that
phrase does not appear in the url on on the page!

There are several cases where this has happened, but perhaps the
most famous is where the Adobe Reader download page ranked #1 for
the search term “click here” for many years even though those
words were nowhere on the page. So many people had linked to that
page using the anchor text “click here” that it got to the #1
spot without any on page SEO for the term.

Search engines place a large importance on external anchor text
(links coming in from other sites) and some importance on
internal anchor text (links from within your own site) when
ranking a page so it stands to reason that you should make
getting anchor text backlinks with your target keyword phrases a
priority.

One important thing to note is that it is widely thought that if
two links on the same page target the same url, that only the
first link is counted by Google so you want to be sure that you
use your desired anchor text in that first link.

How Anchor Text Is Important When Judging Competition For A
Keyword

If you think about how important anchor text is to the search
engines when determining ranking for a keyword, then it’s easy
to see why it is a critical component of analyzing the
competition for a particular keyword phrase.

Google even provides you with a search operator to do this –
the allinanchor operator. You can use it by typing the following
into the google search bar:

Allinanchor:”your keyword phrase”

This will return the pages which have anchor text pointing to it
that contain the quoted keyword phrase.

I hope you can see how powerful this is – first of all, Google
must think it is an important element of a page because it
provides the allinanchor operator. Just the existence of the
operator would seem to indicate that it uses the anchor text when
deciding what a page is about and ranking it.

Secondly, using this operator will show you which pages are
optimizing for your chosen keyword phrase!

It makes sense that only the pages that have anchor text
backlinks with your phrase are the ones optimizing for it so you
can forget about searching for your phrase in quotes or any of
that non-sense.

Not only that but, you can take a look at the actual backlinks
for each of your competitors and see how many of them have that
anchor text and what the strength of those links are to make a
more educated guess as to how difficult they will be to beat out
for that top spot.

Anchor Text “Best Practices” For Your Website

Now that you know how important anchor text is to your rankings,
I’m sure you will want to pay more attention to it in your SEO
efforts but you don’t want to go hog wild and create tons of
anchor text backlinks all with the same keyword phrase or you
might find that your efforts don’t yield the results you want.

Here are some things to consider:

1. Vary Your Anchor Text – We all know that Google prefers it
when people link to you naturally and when that is the case, they
don’t all use the same anchor text. So, when you are linking to
your site from your articles or web2.0 properties you want to
make sure you don’t always use the same phrase as well. Using
your target phrase in about 50% – 60% of the links is probably a
good idea.

2. Links From Relevant Pages – For the best results, you want
your anchor text backlinks to come from pages that are related to
the topic because this is what would happen naturally if people
were linking to you because you had great content it would most
likely be from a blog post on the same topic.

3. First Link On Page – Don’t forget that Google only counts
the anchor text from the first link that it sees so if you will
have more than one link to the same url on a page, act
accordingly.

4.Plan For Natural Linking – There’s nothing better than
having people just naturally link to one of your posts but, of
course, you can’t control the anchor text they use when they
do. Since most people will naturally use your headline as anchor
text, you want to be sure to consider that when coming up with
the title for your blog posts.

Anchor text is crucial to both your SEO efforts as well as when
analyzing the competition for a keyword phrase. Taking the time
to use it properly can be the difference between ranking in the
top 3 and not ranking at all so it’s in your best interest to
start putting better anchor text practices to use in your
business today!
About The Author:
Anchor text backlinks play a key role in SEO.  Get a free copy of
Lee’s”Website Promotion Blueprint Guide” to get more website
traffic: http://hypertracker.com/go/leedobbins/PhantomWriters/.

Read More Articles From Lee Dobbins:
http://thephantomwriters.com/recent/author/lee-dobbins.html

Write to be Understood

By Janice Gillgren

“Do you understand what I mean to say?” My Great-Uncle used to tack this long questioning phrase onto many of his statements or questions. I thought this was really quirky when I was young, and used to laugh at him, as he sat on his chair, with his big pipe hanging out of his mouth. It was such a long way of asking if we had understood him correctly.

Why is being understood so important? Put that way, the answer is obvious: If you are not writing (or speaking) to be understood, why bother?

The internet has changed the way we communicate. It has made communication both more simple, but also more fraught with misunderstanding than ever. You can send something around the world in a second; and your words can be kept indefinitely in an archive somewhere in cyber space.

Partly due to the fact that there are so many languages all being translated so that we can all understand each other, there is increasing opportunities for wrong understanding .

Each country, each state, each culture – all have different ways of saying the same things. Trouble is, what you say to your neighbours may mean something quite different to someone across the world, so it is more important than ever to write clearly and carefully so that (hopefully) anyone can understand what it is you mean to say.

How can you make write to make yourself more clearly understood? Here are six ways that will help:

� Use words that are aimed at your average reader’s reading level. For a useful guide to the level you should use – read your local newspaper. Their level should be suitable for you as well.

� Beware of slang- those particular words or terms used in a locality or by a specific cultural group. One person I know uses the term ‘hit the sack’ to mean ‘go to bed.’ While that’s fine when talking to a local, it’s likely to be very confusing to someone who has no idea why you should pummel some sackcloth!

� Read your writing aloud to yourself; imagining yourself to be a critical and ignorant reader. (Don’t be too tough on yourself though, or you’ll never get past the first paragraph!)

� Arrange your points as logically as possible, so that there is sensible flow.

� If at all possible, wait for a while. How long you wait will probably depend on how long your item is. I find that a longer piece of writing does better with a longer wait; probably because the important flow of an item is more difficult to determine than just grammar and spelling, and a longer wait will help you come back to it with a fresher perspective so you can more readily see faults.

� If you cannot wait, (or even if you can) ask someone else to read it. This is where a writing buddy, a mentor or a writer’s support group can be invaluable.

Sometimes, in our endeavour to achieve a certain style of writing, or attain a required word count, we may forget what we are writing for – to be understood as clearly as possible.

Having been a freelance writer for some years now, I can say for sure that the hardest work in writing is to write clearly enough that you are unlikely to be misunderstood.

So – do you understand what I mean to say?

Janice Gillgren is the author of the website and blog called [http://www.wordsandscenes.co.nz]http://www.wordsandscenes.co.nz.

The blog on this site offers inspiration, encouragement and useful tips to writers at all levels.

Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Write-to-be-Understood&id=6527591] Write to be Understood

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Writing Tip of the Week 18

It’s easy for a writer to become too introverted and staring at the same four walls can be detrimental to the whole creative process. If you start to feel stale then take yourself out for the day and visit somewhere new but don’t switch off your creative thoughts, instead soak up your surroundings like a sponge and recharge your batteries.

Make a mental note of the people that you see, events that occur and absorb the scenery. You can even try creating little fictional plots as you enjoy your day. Any ideas that you get may well come in useful for when back at your desk but most of all you will feel mentally refreshed and ready to start writing again.

Green Up Your Home Office

Green living is an important concept for everyone to embrace and as writers, we should be equally conscious about our own contribution to the planet. If you mention green living, people immediately think of recycling, composting or swapping traditional light bulbs for energy efficient ones and whilst these are fantastic changes to make, you can also make some smaller and yet significant changes in your own home office environment and it just means altering the way that you currently work.

Years ago I was a demon for printing off all of my research materials- some of it was useful of course and I did like having paper to wade through as I made my notes but if I’m honest, a lot of my research material was unnecessary and I wasted reams of paper. As writers we do tend to use a lot of paper, and if you think about your own writing processes, how much actually ends up in the waste paper bin?

Becoming a little environmentally conscious and starting in your work space is a good thing and it’s not difficult to do. Firstly, can you keep your research material online? It may not be as easy but you can mark the pages that are the most relevant and print off just these pages if you really need a hard copy. Most times now, my research material stays on my laptop and I just highlight the content that I am likely to need, therefore saving many trees in the process and of course, keeping my money in the bank.

Recycled paper is readily available these days so if you do need to print, reach for the recycled instead. When you visit your local stationers, keep a look out for paper at sales prices and then stock up if you can. It’s worth keeping a bin next to your desk where you can store unwanted printed paper, this isn’t for throwing out, you can print on the other side, make notes or simply use for scrap paper but at least you can maximize your usage.

Printer cartridges can be quite expensive so try to have them refilled rather than just throwing them away and replacing. Sometimes, you will need to buy new but make sure that you dispose of your old cartridges sensibly. There are many cartridge disposal places and some companies enclose a pre-paid bag so that you send the old cartridges directly back to them. Got a printer or old electronic equipment that you no longer need? Don’t send them to landfill sites, sell, part-exchange, or offer them up free on any ‘freecycle’ sites as some people will enjoy the chance of repairing them or will be grateful for your old equipment. You could even donate them to charities or shelters.

Of course this list is by no means extensive, but it’s a good starting point and can make a substantial difference and it’s amazing how once you start, you can ‘green up your living space too’.

Image: © Julien Tromeur | Dreamstime.com

Writing Tip of the Week 17

 If you are having a bad day with your writing, the words won’t come and every page is painstakingly hard, it’s very easy to be tempted  to discard your work, but resist that compulsion and simply put your writing away for another day. On a bad day, your perception of the standard may well be tainted and you will be particularly hard on yourself.

On another day when reviewing that material, you may be pleasantly surprised by how good your work actually is. Plus, as you had a reason for writing that material previously why not make use of the content? Re-write it, edit it or  simply use snippets from it, and see how you feel on a day when the creative process is flying. Remember- no writing is ever wasted.

Writing Tip of the Week 16

Want to know how to capitalise on your hobbies and interests? It’s simple. Choose the subject that you know most about or are most interested in and create a long list covering every aspect of your chosen subject. From this you will be able to see just how much knowledge you have and what information you could write about.

Having passion for a subject means that you can share this knowledge with other like-minded people. To some, you will be an expert simply through your experiences. As long as you have researched and double-checked your information before writing and submitting for publication, you could find that you have carved out an exciting little niche for yourself.

Writing Tip of the Week 15

How many times has devine inspiration suddenly appeared out of the blue? That perfect idea, the perfect character, a plot that sizzles with so many twists and turns that it takes your breath away? But how typical that you are in the middle of a family dinner or at work,submerged in a sea of paperwork or perhaps your children are asking you to push them harder and higher on the swings.

 You may want to commit your idea to memory and believe that you will remember this idea once you are back at home but don’t take that chance. Good ideas can come and go in a flash. It only takes a moments distraction before your memory starts to fade and before you know it, it’s vanished or you are left with a mere shell of a plot.

Why not carry a little notebook with you when you are out? Or if you prefer, invest in a dictaphone. It needn’t take you long to scribble down the essence of your idea but you will be very glad that you did. Remember, that one idea could be the latest best-seller and it could seal your fate as the next great writer.

Ideas are precious. Store yours for when you have time to indulge them.

Let Your Verbs Run Wild And Free

By Dara Lurie

I said this recently to a writer in a workshop reacting spontaneously to the wonderful story I could see trapped behind the bars of overly condensed description.

This kind of thing happens a lot. Rushing to make our point, we summarize and condense the life out of our stories. Instead of allowing our language to expand and transport us somewhere unexpected, we harness it for our predetermined goals. This approach works well for reports, memos and academic papers but not so well for literary writing.

Pulitzer Prize winning author, Robert Olen Butler, writes that:

Fiction is the art form of human yearning. That is absolutely essential to any work of fictional narrative art — a character who yearns. And that is not the same as a character who simply has problems….. that yearning is at the heart of all temporal art forms.

The same idea holds equally true for poetry, memoir and to a certain extent, the essay: the reader needs to connect at an intimate level with the driving force within the narrator. Otherwise, they won’t care.

Consider the author’s use of verbs & imagery in this excerpt from Janet Fitch’s “Oleander”

In the afternoon, the editor descended on the art room, dragging scarves of Oriental perfume that lingered in the air long after she was gone. A thin woman with overbright eyes and the nervous gestures of a frightened bird, Kit smiled too widely in her red lipstick as she darted here and there, looking at the design, examining pages, stopping to read type over my mother’s shoulder, and pointing out corrections. My mother flipped her hair back, a cat twitching before it clawed you.

“All that hair,” Kit said. “Isn’t it dangerous in your line of work? Around the waxer and all.” Her own hairstyle was geometric, dyed an inky black and shaved at the neck.

My mother ignored her, but let the X-acto fall so it impaled the desktop like a javelin.

Notice how the editor doesn’t walk into the room but ‘descended……..dragging scarves of Oriental perfume that lingered” She never walks, in fact, she ‘darts’ like a ‘frightened bird’ intruding on everyone’s space.

In contrast, the narrator’s mother ‘flipped her hair back, a cat twitching before it clawed you.’

Evocative use of verbs & image economically sets up the tension of this moment.

You won’t necessarily find the clearest, most potent language in the 1st or 2nd drafts of your piece though you probably will find a few jewels buried in the clutter of ideas. So where to start?

Read more at http://www.Transformative-Writing.com

Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Let-Your-Verbs-Run-Wild-And-Free&id=6463495] Let Your Verbs Run Wild And Free

Writing Tip of the Week 14

Hoping to have some quality writing time on your next day off? Excited by the prospect of hours of creativity? Don’t waste a minute. Have your plans in place and a mass of writing topics, projects and stimulus ready just in case your creative spirit begins to flag. This could be photos for inspiration, first lines of published books or even a series of What If’s. You could even use any writing competition to give you inspiration whether you plan to submit or not. Providing you are well prepared, you will be able to enjoy the creative process and feel satisfied that you have made the most of your writing time.

Blog Management – Know When to Let Go

Copyright (c) 2011 Enzo F. Cesario

Sometimes a topic just isn’t working – you can tell when you’re writing it, and you can tell when you’re reading it. Maybe the humor is forced, tired, or rote. Maybe the blogger didn’t go into the same level of interesting side detail that he usually does, or perhaps her topic looks like she fell back on a safe and reliable piece, rather than going somewhere new like her last eight. Whatever the reason, not every topic is created equal, and sometimes a post just isn’t up to anything like your usual standards.

There are a lot of reasons, most of them hard to pin down, for why a post might not be making the cut. Perhaps the details are just too sparse to get ahold of, or the interview that the post is based on just went poorly and the subject has almost no personality to do a piece on, or maybe it’s just mind-numbingly dull to the writer and he can’t work up any enthusiasm for it. These things happen, not necessarily to every writer, but they are likely to happen to most.

So the question becomes, how do you deal with a bad topic?

The professional answer might be to “chin up and bear through it, deliver what you were hired to write and just try harder next time.” For some of us, this is acceptable and even good practice. After all, not every assignment can be gravy; sometimes you just have to bite the bullet.

However, this article aims to argue that this is not always or even often the case, and writers need to learn when to let a topic go and move on to something else more frequently.

How Does This Work?

After all, professional bloggers in particular are hired to write about specific subjects — how can they get away with writing about something else or just dropping a topic?

It has to be said, the option to leave a post behind isn’t always there. Sometimes an assignment is too specific, and one has to go through with it. However, this is actually very rarely the case. An engaging blog is about the writer’s personality, not necessarily the content (although the content is how this persona is put forward). Thus if a particular topic or, more importantly, a particular approach to a topic is not working for a writer, then a change is needed in either small or great degree to allow the writer to work their particular magic.

Side Doors

The first step in letting go of an article is to let go of your initial approach to it. It may be that the subject itself actually isn’t all that bad, just that the initial or usual way of approaching it isn’t working out so well. Take that interview example: Say our mysterious blogger is an interviewing genius, and has had some exceptional success with interview-driven blog posts so far. However, the latest interviewee, an artist in this case, is just dreadful. Their work is exciting, their reputation amazing, but in person or in print they’re as dull as a brick! The blogger can’t get their normal approach to work.

Alright, another approach is warranted. So instead of using the actual interview, our blogger makes one up. This isn’t to say they make up the actual interview with the artist, which would be illegal and wrong. Instead, they interview the person’s art itself. They raise questions they have, and look at what answers the art itself provides.

This is a bit of an esoteric example, but it illustrates the key point — if you’re having trouble doing something, try approaching it from a different angle. Languages are flexible, with shades of meaning and cultural variations that can surprise you. Experiment a bit and see if a new method opens new successes.

Genuinely Drop It

Some topics, however, just don’t work. It happens, be it writer’s block or just a lack of information.

The solution here is be honest. If you are your own boss, just accept that you tried and it’s time to write something else. Writers of fiction do it all the time; bloggers should be no different.

If you’re writing for an organization that expects you to cover certain topics, be up front as early as possible and go to your bosses with an explanation in detail why the topic isn’t working, and why you think posting it would be detrimental rather than helpful. To make the process easier, go with alternative ideas — already written out or at least drafted in proposal form — so they can see you know what you’re talking about and have the content ready.

Why Letting Go is Good

Burnout is a very real phenomenon among bloggers. People can sense when a writer hasn’t put their heart and soul into a piece, and they can tell when something was forced out of their keyboard at gunpoint. Consistently forcing oneself to write articles that wear on them will wear a writer down and diminish their blogging talents. So for the sake of your creativity and excellence, make sure that you know when an article needs either a different approach, or a graceful decline.

About The Author:
Enzo F. Cesario is an online branding specialist and co-founder of Brandsplat, a digital content agency. Brandsplat creates blogs, articles, videos and social media in the “voice” of our client’s brand. It makes sites more findable and brands more recognizable. For the free Brandcasting Report go to http://www.BrandSplat.com/ or visit our blog at http://www.iBrandCasting.com/

Image: © Damien Richard | Dreamstime.com

Plan Your Writing Day

by Annette Young

Over the years, I have tried and tested many different ways to enable myself to be more productive with my writing. From getting up at some unearthly hour and hoping that the creative part of my brain would kick into gear, to writing at lunchtimes (squeezing in as much writing as I could whilst working full-time ) to dedicating myself to the writing process just at weekends. Initially it was difficult to make myself sit down to write on demand but after a while, this approach worked-most of the time anyway because there were some days where I really struggled to find the right words. I even used reward tactics when I had successfully completed a difficult project, and this helped when I was working on writing projects that in my mind were deadly dull.

I came to the conclusion that the words are always there if you search for them hard enough but on sometimes, it’s a case of digging deep and pulling them out one by one. Surprisingly though, these can be times when the results are of a high standard and there is a greater sense of satisfaction at having persevered. One thing that I have found works for me is that  I enjoy the process of writing down thoughts and potential ideas in a notebook (the latest is a glorious red hand-stitched fabric) and there i can collate the jumble of ideas that are mulling around in my mind at any one time, and assemble them in some type of working order. Using something so precious, means I get great pleasure about writing on the handmade paper pages and feel satisfied when my creative to-do list is pretty much fulfilled.

At a weekend, when I’m always less inclined to get into work mode, I write my notes the night before so that I can review them and refresh my memory in the morning and this triggers my inspiration to get on and get my head down. This might not work for everyone but if you are a bit like me, have a mass of ideas, are prone to being distracted, feel very lazy at times, then, creating a list of tasks to be completed just might be the way forward for you. Remember that to succeed in writing, you have to find what works for you. Play to your strengths but recognise your weaknesses and you will generally be far more productive and successful.

The Secret Behind Keeping A Secret

By Rosemary Sneeringer

When you have an idea for a book or story, a big juicy hit that you can’t get out of your head that makes you jaunty and happy when you think of it, you know you have a good thing going. So why spoil it? Keep it to yourself.
There are a number of reasons why you should keep your ideas and your writing close to the vest. When you spill the beans, you have opened your idea up to various interpretations. Up until then it was clean, unsullied and pure, and it was yours alone. When you tell someone else your idea, it’s not your precious private idea anymore. And no matter how much you are protecting the integrity of the idea in your head, their comments will always be in your head now too.
It’s a good idea to incubate your idea alone, and get started writing on it before you tell anyone.
There are some exceptions to this concept. When you’re in a writing class and sharing your writing, this can be a great help, as long as it is a supportive class. You also want to be sure you tune in to your inner compass and only take the suggestions that resonate with you. Your idea should be developed enough to withstand criticism, unless you are just throwing out ideas and not too attached to them.
One thing that often happens is that people try to connect the dots to something they’ve read or seen that sounds even vaguely familiar to what you’re attempting. The funny thing about writing is that the same theme or concept can be the root of a somber and gut-wrenching tragedy or a rollicking comedy, so it’s important to honor what you’re writing as a work that is completely original.
There are so many influences from our culture and thousands of stories we’ve seen in our lives from television episodes alone. So when someone does play with the genre in an inventive way, it’s a shame to close down and conform to convention.
At times, however, you may be deluded and have an idea that’s just not going to work or be marketable. In that case, it’s good to know before you invest too much time in it that it’s a waste of time. Fortunately, this mostly applies to non-fiction, where it’s prudent to do your homework in advance anyway. In fiction, it’s a big, creative world out there, and when invention connects with an audience, it can connect in a big, big way.

Rosemary Sneeringer is The Book Nurturer. An experienced editor, she specializes in helping writers access their inner author to complete their novels, memoirs and books and to grow their businesses. Go to http://www.thebooknurturer.com for more information. Sign up for my FREE newsletter & receive the FREE downloadable meditation “Envisioning Your Book.”
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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 7

Music has a way to inspire and it has the power to stimulate the creative mind. Next time you are struggling to write with deep emotion, play any songs that evoke an emotional response and watch how the words begin to flow afterwards.