Don’t Start Your Writing Career Believing Falsehoods: Learn the Art of Writing by Carol Malone
Today we welcome Author Carol Malone as she shares with us her writing tips discovered during her writing journey publishing her first eBook. Don’t start your writing career believing falsehoods: learn the art of writing. Enjoy!
I’ve been on a serious writing journey for awhile and just published my first eBook. While walking that path, I’ve discovered a lot of things about myself and the writing process. Even as an amateur, I’d love to share what I’ve learned in the hopes it will keep someone else’s feet on the trail toward their dreams of successful publishing. I held certain beliefs regarding writing that have proven to be false. Here are my top five:
1. If you don’t have the writing talent gene, you can’t write.
Whoever tells you that, don’t believe them for a moment. Though there are writers out there who definitely have a writing gene, be it an extra X or Y chromosome, writing is like a muscle. It will grow and firm up if exercised. I don’t care who the writer is, be they Stephen King or Nora Roberts, they had to “learn” about of writing, find a writing book and read it. http://www.amazon.com/Writers-Adventure-Guide-Stages-Writing/ I look back at my first manuscript and it sucks.
2. Write what you know.
But what if you want to write about three-toed space aliens invading the plant Zoron with deadly blood sucking laser guns? Do you know anything about space aliens or Zoron? What about blood sucking laser gun technology. No? Research is the key. Reading is another key. If you’re going to focus on science fiction – read science fiction. You’re not going to COPY what great science fiction writers write, you’re going to learn from them until you find your own voice then nurture it.
3. You must only read in your genre to be a great writer.
Okay. That’s a big NO! There will always be great stories in other genres that will inspire you, teach you techniques and give you ideas for your own stories. Of course, some stories stink, but even those will teach you valuable lessons. A great teacher told me to read as a writer. I actually take a red pen to a novel I’m reading and circle mistakes, plot holes and the smelly stuff. Notice how another author crafts their story. Notice the emotions it elicits. http://www.amazon.com/Writing-Emotional-Impact-Techniques-Fascinate/
4. Writing is a solitary occupation.
This is true – to a point. Yes, you are alone when you actually sit yourself down in a chair and face an empty piece of paper or a blank computer screen. Your thoughts, your dreams, and your ideas come to you alone. But great authors study great writing. Find competent people to instruct you in the art, because we do paint with words. See: http://www.stevenpressfield.com/the-war-of-art/ Although you’re the one doing the actual scribbling, to make it sizzle, you need helpers.
5. Editing your book can only be done by a professional.
A good professional editor can make your writing sing, but self-editing is crucial. http://www.amazon.com/Self-Editing-Fiction-Writers-Second-Yourself/ After reading “Self-Editing,” it didn’t take me long to see I needed rescuing. I found a book coach, then the sky opened up. See: http://bethbarany.com/ Like I said before, writing is not a solitary occupation.
I know I can’t possibly cover all the things I’ve learned in this brief article. I’m by no means an expert in writing or publishing, but I know what I have learned, and if it helps someone, then I’m going to be doing my happy dance, give you a virtual hug, and a big thumbs up. Next time I’ll discuss what I learned to be true on my writing journey.
Carol Malone has written LADIES NIGHT under the pseudonym Jill Tunney. LADIES NIGHT is a mash-up of pulp boxing and sweet romance set against the back drop of LA in the 1950s. As a certifiable sports nut and a sentimental romantic, she pens historical sports stories enticing sports fans and lovers of happily-ever-after to scramble into a front row seat and catch all the pulse-pounding action. Carol lives with her husband in sunny California.
More about Carol and her fiction here: