Since you had such memorable experiences to share regarding feedback you’ve received on your writing, I thought I’d turn the tables today. Let’s talk advice. It can be just what you need to hear. It can give you an idea to help you structure your writing or achieve a goal.
Of course, it can be completely off the mark and inappropriate. That’s not what I’m asking you to share today. What’s the writing advice that clicked for you? I’m asking you to share advice that’s helped you—and that you think your fellow writers will appreciate.
I’ll start with two items, one of which I heard recently.
- Put your butt in the chair and write. That essay, short story, novel, memoir is not going to get written unless you are writing. For a time, I tried carving out one day each week for writing. That was a bit unrealistic to maintain—and it was too easy to lose that day but not replace it. I’m now trying to write a certain number of words per day and email that total to a friend. This was working very well, until I overbooked myself with copywriting gigs. Still, that daily goal is there for me and I’ve already made good progress on a project because of it.
- Don’t let me see that chapter again. The point to this one is to keep writing. If you are hung up on perfecting one element, such as a chapter, you’ll never move on to the next. Sometimes you need to draft the whole so that you can identify the story you’re actually telling. I have a few shiny, polished chapters of a project…and a long gap where I wasn’t writing further because I was still tinkering with earlier chapters. Now I’m determined to get a full draft written so I can break out a box of red pencils and really revise.
Now it’s your turn! Like my other 50/50 posts, this is where you share your opinions and experiences. What’s the best writing advice you’ve received? Please share in the comments!