How I Write: Tips for New Writers
Every writer has his or her own unique style. There really isn’t any one magical way to approach the writing process. It all depends on the individual and what he or she is actually writing – i.e., fiction, memoir, children’s books or nonfiction, etc. Some people choose to write first thing in the morning; others, late at night. Some prefer solitude and quiet when writing; others choose to have music or television on in the background. Always select one or two places that will allow you to create your best work.
I have often been told that my writing is very heartfelt and sincere. Reflecting on that, I will say that I do “write from my heart.” It’s hard to definitively explain what that means. I guess I would define it as not writing through my ego. Rather, I listen to my inner intuition and allow it to guide me through the process. I focus on topics that I am extremely passionate about and those that I feel can make a positive difference in humanity.
Tips for New Writers
For those new to the writing process, my predominant tip is to “just do it.” In the beginning, don’t worry about the editing, organization or formatting process as that comes later. Just let your “writing muse” flow and write down what comes forward. Once you get started, you may find that all of a sudden, the words start to flood the page. It’s a beautiful thing when this happens.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Even if you develop a concept for a book that’s already been published, utilize your creative vision to make yours unique. Writing a book is a big deal; it’s not as easy as it may sound as there are so many facets to the overall process. You have to WANT it. If writing isn’t your jam, you may find it hard to finish the product.
Here are some writing tips that I utilize. I hope they can be of benefit to you as well.
- Keep a notebook or journal near you so you can mark down those amazing ideas that seemingly come out of nowhere.
- Engage in creative inspiration, whatever it may be.
- Planning is so imperative to the entire manuscript. Establishing an outline or rough table of contents helps me with organizing the book.
- Make sure you do your research. Cross-reference source material to make sure you have accurate facts and statistics.
- When creating an idea for a book, I ask myself, “How would I describe this proposed book to its core audience in one or two concise sentences?” Then, I build upon the main idea(s).
- Keep a dictionary, thesaurus and source referencing material handy. Many publishers use the Chicago Manual of Style.
- Remember that procrastination is not your friend. Make a writing schedule and stick to it.
- You don’t have to write the book sequentially. I tend to write the body of my book first and save the introduction and epilogue for last, for example.
- Proofread, proofread, proofread – at least three times. Have a trusted colleague, friend or relative read your manuscript as well.
- Invest in editing resources, such as Grammarly, MasterWriter or SmartEdit in addition to having a professional editor read / critique your work.
- Talk and engage with other writers. Shared learning leads to brightened horizons.
- Don’t put too much emphasis on agents and publishers at the beginning. Just write.
- Listen to your editor. He or she is there to help make your book better. Be open to his or her critiques and constructive criticism.
- Take some intriguing writing courses. There is always something else to learn.
- Be motivated. Be courageous. Be YOU!
Writing is a life-long process. You’d be surprised at the inspiration you receive each day the sun rises. Make sure to take note of those sources of inspiration. Create a vision board for your proposed projects. Do not let the word “rejection” stop you from moving forward. Always remember, “when one door closes, another one opens.” Some of the most renowned authors have been told “no” several times.