Friday, April 20, 2007

Best Writing Advice, Ever

Thanks to advice by Desert Rat, I've decided to cancel my Friday's Excuses Not to Write and focus instead on reasons to write. I thought I would celebrate this by posting 'best advice.' I've approached several published authors and asked them what's the best writing advice they've ever received or heard. I will post one or two on Fridays (when I'm able to post).

Here's the first:
"During my second year as a published author, I had a private discussion about the biz with author Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I'd gone through some very bad experiences by then, and I was seriously worried if I was even cut out to work in this industry. She told me, "Whatever you do, protect the work." I took that to heart, and from that point began removing everything in my professional life that interfered with my writing. My productivity skyrocketed in the years that followed, but more importantly, I was a much happier writer."
~ Lynn Viehl, aka PaperBack Writer
What's the best writing advice you've ever heard?


Cole Reising said...

Hmmmm, I like that piece of advice! Thanks!


Georganna Hancock M.S. said...

Way back in the dark ages of typewriters and US mail, when I was just beginning to write professionally, I met the author of "Cool Hand Luke". His name escapes me at this senior moment, but his advice still rings in my mind: never turn down an assignment.

Unknown said...

The most useful thing to me has not been advice, but recently discovering the way TV shows develop their templates for episodes.

All of my stories take place in the same universe and I was always frustrated at being unable to find a kind of consistency between stories. The drafts I had written of each my stories did not seem part of the same world, because I hadn't developed a proper template.

This caused me to waste lots of time and effort writing and rewriting, when a story bible and a template based off the story bible would have saved me a couple years of time and energy struggling to create something well without the proper measuring sticks.

Now that I've learned how TV showrunners and writers work their magic in developing stories and keeping the quality consistent, I feel like any future writing I do will not be wasted.

This is the 'cure' to my unhappy disease as a (re)writer. I now have a method I can apply to the madness. :)

Ana P. S. said...

Hi Nienke, how are you? This is Ana, at your bravejournal friendslist a couple of years ago. Anyway, your journal came to mind so I stopped by there, and well, it led me here. Hey, I have a blogspot, too. I hope you can drop by some time. See you.

Bonnie Staring said...

Great idea Nienke! The best writing advice I ever received was from a former editor who told me "not to fight my voice."

If only I had understood what he meant and not been too timid to ask for an explanation. ;)