Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Writing Advice!

Today the authors of Dark Matter: Artificial share their best writing advice with their fellow writers! Come learn from what they've learned through their experiences!

Stephanie Espinoza Villamor: When I was 16 years old, author Joyce Spizer Foy gave me the advice to just "throw up on paper" first. It sounds gross but basically means get your words out. Put something on paper. Even if it's "bleh." Editing will come later, and what you think is "bleh" can lead you in the right direction or be better than you thought! But nothing will happen if you keep waiting for the right words/ideas and don't start! The best advice that I've learned on my own is to join critique groups with people who write in the same genre/age group as you. They'll give you ideas you didn't think of. They'll help you see what's confusing in you work. And they can be incredible support.

C.D. Gallant-King: My best piece of writing advice? Don't listen to anyone else's advice. Everyone has completely different opinions on how to be successful, and what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for someone else. Always look for qualified advice (randos on YouTube and Facebook don't count!) and take any suggestions with a truckload of salt.

Kim Mannix: I know a lot of writers would give the advice that you have to write every day to keep yourself in practice, but I think it's important to remember that it's important to give yourself breaks from writing too, if that's what you need. Take a vacation. Go experience things that you can take back to your writing. Absorb. We're basically like sponges in the way we collect our stories, but we don't have to constantly be wringing them out. I think so much writing happens in the heart and the head, before you get to the page or keyboard, and it's ok to allow yourself that time to think and process.

Steph Wolmarans: Start doing it because it is fun, improve how you do it because you want others to have fun, then keep doing it!

Tara Tyler: Follow your gut. Write what you feel good about writing. The tough part is ignoring the nagging doubt fairy and the distraction demons who can be tough to distinguish from your tried and true gut. Just keep writing!

Deniz Bevan: The best short advice I’ve ever heard is from Diana Gabaldon: “Read. Write. Don’t stop.”

My longer advice would be to send your characters to a writers’ houseparty!

Charles Kowalski: A young English teacher once sat down to write a high-school horror story, but gave up after three pages and threw the manuscript away. The story didn’t excite him, he didn’t like the main character, and he didn’t feel he could write convincingly from the point of view of an outcast teenage girl. The next day, he came home to find the pages back on his desk, smoothed out with the cigarette ashes brushed off them, and his wife urging him to finish what he had started. The writer’s name was Stephen King, and Carrie was the book that launched his career. Moral of the story? Don’t self-censor. If a book comes to you and tells you it wants you to write it, listen to it. (And when its voice grows too faint to hear, it always helps to have someone who believes in you strongly enough to fish your pages out of the wastebasket.)

Olga Godim: Usually, my advice runs to one word: PERSEVERE. But now I want to add a couple more: READ WIDELY. The more you read, in any and all genres, the better your writing will be.

Elizabeth Mueller: There are many voices out there, pulling you into many different directions. Be true to yourself and your writing! It also helps to connect with other writers, because writers need writers after all!

Mark Alpert: You can’t be a writer unless you’re an avid reader. If you want to write science fiction, read lots of science fiction; if you want to write thrillers, read plenty of thrillers. And so on and so forth.

Next post is coming up Wednesday, July 7, 2021 . . . IWSG Day!

Don't forget! Dark Matter: Artificial is available now on AmazonKobo, and Barnes and Noble!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Be true to yourself.
Kim, I've never wrote every day.
Heard the story about King. Crazy, huh? It might've all ended there.

Fundy Blue said...

Lots of good advice here! Thanks, everyone!

Jemi Fraser said...

Great advice!
I've always liked: Read, read, read. Write, write, write.