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And…..Here We Go…..


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2014 sucked for me in many ways. I didn’t do as much writing as I would have liked, I had 3 different major surgeries (ah…growing old…) and I ended it with stuff I had sworn to myself I would already have done. (Of course that last one I do every year…) When midnight on the first day of 2015 hot I promised myself (as I do every year) this year will be different. Needless to say I haven’t exactly gotten off to a stellar start.

The beginnings are the hardest aren’t they? People ask me all the time how I come up with my stories and I tend to spout off various smart ass quips about it but to be honest the rest of the stories are easy…it’s the beginning that is always the hardest and I think it is that way for most writers.

The beginning has to grab the reader right? It has to encourage them to involve themselves in the story. If the beginning isn’t good the reader will put that book down and never ever pick it up again. As a writer I find this true of my life as well. I have to begin and it has to be good or I will spend the rest of the year playing tag with my writing. It is for this reason that I am going to suggest that whatever project you decide to begin 2015 with…make it good.

Sure we all have tons of stories in the works but if you choose a lessor project you really will not be as motivated throughout the year as you need to be. I always want to hit the ground running with a project that excites me…that compels me on so that I am tempted to do my best writing right off the bat. If I do that then I can spend the rest of the year trying to top that first great piece ensuring that the rest of the years’ writing is also good.

So folks…hit the ground running. If you are trying to finish a 2014 project that doesn’t own your heart set it aside and start something that excites you. You will go back to that lessor project but to begin the year with you need something that will pump you up. It’s important so that 2015 doesn’t suck in the end.

 

 

© The Writer’s Advice, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2015 in Writing, Writing Tools

 

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Time to Start Again….Oh BS!


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New Year, new start…that’s what you will hear everyone say for the next few weeks; it’s annoying. Yes, it’s a new year….and yes; many of us will begin new projects however, that doesn’t mean that you have to begin all over again. That feeling that you are stealing time if you continue with the 2014 work is bumpkiss….

We seem to associate the New Year with new beginnings in such a way that we often kill ourselves trying to hit the mark. We rush through the last project of 2014 thinking that we are somehow a failure if we are not beginning a new project in 2014. The problem with doing this is that we tend to miss important aspects of the rushed project. Writing is not meant to be rushed.

For me I try not to think in terms of time when it comes to my writing. I do set soft deadlines but I never rush one work to begin another. It’s like putting your pants on before your underwear is pulled up…awkward….
So before you jump into that 2015 project take a moment of revisit the 2014 one and make sure that you have not rushed it through.

Our words, our stories are too important to be slashed and burned in the name of time. Slow down and see 2015 for what it is…a continuation of life and more time to write.

© The Writer’s Advice, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2015 in Writing

 

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Best Advice for 2015


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I have been mulling over what the best possible advice for 2015 could be over the last week. 2014 was quite a year for me as I am sure it was for everyone else. At the age I am at right now I am looking back over half a century wondering where the time has gone. One thing is very clear when you reach age 50….time keeps going even when you beg for it to stop.

As a writer time flows differently for us. We see time in a way that others take for granted. We see it in stories and when you do that, I personally think that you tend to see the passing of it clearer than others. Each story has a beginning, a middle and an end so we, as writers, see life as a never ending series. My series is far from over at this point but when you are half way through the book you do tend to wonder what’s next.

The best advice I have for 2015 is something that is actually written on a tattoo on my upper arm. It is a phrase that my kids are very familiar with, as are my friends….One Dragon at a Time. It is a simple saying and it means exactly what it says…you have to fight one dragon at a time if you want to win the game. Yes I am a Game of Thrones fan but no this phrase didn’t come from that. It’s something that my grandmother would say to me as a kid. At the time I had no idea how hard her life was and that she often said this phrase to herself just to get through the day. Now, 27 years after her death, I still mutter it to myself when times are trying and it is the thing I say to the kids as well as friends when they come to me with a problem that they feel is bigger than they are. It is, in my opinion, the best advice in the world.

So this year, when things get tough and you think you just can’t finish that book, walk that mile, or deal with that situation, remember to take it one dragon at a time. If you take on all the dragons at once, you are bound to lose but one dragon….one dragon is doable…..

Happy 2015 everyone. Sending my love and my positive energy out to each and every one of you.

© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2014 in Inspiration, Writing, Writing Tools

 

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My 2014 in review


The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 16,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 6 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2014 in Writing

 

Writing Pebbles #17


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Like throwing a pebble into the water some writers put advice out into the ocean of hopeful newbies hoping the ripple effects will reach them and they will learn a thing or two. Here at The Writer’s Advice it is pebble collection time. I will post some of the pebbles of wisdom I discover and I encourage you all to do the same. We will help each other. So here are mine….show me yours! –

© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 
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Posted by on November 22, 2014 in Writing, Writing Tools

 

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Writing Pebbles #16


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Like throwing a pebble into the water some writers put advice out into the ocean of hopeful newbies hoping the ripple effects will reach them and they will learn a thing or two. Here at The Writer’s Advice it is pebble collection time. I will post some of the pebbles of wisdom I discover and I encourage you all to do the same. We will help each other. So here are mine….show me yours!

© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 
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Posted by on November 18, 2014 in Writing, Writing Tools

 

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Stop Wasting Valuable Writing Time


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I, like a lot of writers, am a master procrastinator. There are some days when I will use anything to put off work. Stressed, can’t work. Laundry to do, can’t work. Cat box needs to be scooped, can’t work. It’s sunny outside, can’t work. It’s cold and rainy, can’t work….it goes on and on. Part of my problem is that I work from home, most days alone. When you have no one but yourself to police you…well…let’s just say I can be a pretty lenient boss. The other part of my problem is that I tend to get wrapped up in other projects or small menial tasks. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest….yep…they can all be an issue.

From time to time I also try and convince myself that any writing is “writing”. While Titter and Facebook posting can be fun…it ain’t writing folks. It’s playing, it’s being nosy, and it’s a ridiculous waste of time. Don’t get me wrong, when it comes to marketing those sites have their usefulness but overall it is best to avoid or at least limit your time on them. I get up every morning allot a period of time to answer e-mails and social media update and then I try and let it go for the rest of the day. I am not always successful but if I am to be honest, I need to get a better handle on it.

The bottom line is this….if we are spending all of our writing time updating Facebook we will never be successful writers. We will be that writer with the Facebook fan page who never finishes an actual book. Don’t be that writer. You must, as a person who works from home and a writer in general, police yourself and make a point to put Twitter, Facebook and any other social media in its place…in the back of the room only to be played with when the rest of your work is done. If you don’t you may well go down in history as a great social media poster but never a published author.

 

 

© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

 

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