There’s one question that I get asked more than any other.
“What are some tips for new writers?”
I decided to share a handful of tips that I’ve dished out to friends who are interested in writing. I feel like most of these tips are important regardless of what you’re writing, but some are just my suggestions and not mandatory for success.
Don’t stop writing. Sounds simple enough, right? Writing is a craft made better through practice. I keep all of my writing projects filed away whether I finish them or not. If I need a boost of confidence that shows me that I’m improving, I’ll flip through an old manuscript and marvel at how I’ve improved.
Never stop learning. The web is filled with information that can help you improve your craft, so take advantage of online resources. You can join writer critique groups or attend writer’s workshops.
Read as much as you write. I analyze everything I read whether I’m reading a comic book or a novel. You’ll learn new words, new ways to get inspired or tell a story, or just something that pushes you want to write more.
Build an outline. Outlines aren’t used by every writer, but I personally work best when I make a basic outline. Outlines can be modified throughout the drafting stages. I start with just the basic plot points, and then I work off of that building block. If my story evolves and goes in a different direction, I simply adjust my outline and keep writing.
Don’t edit until the first draft is finished. This is one tip I always give new writers. You can fix anything in the revision process, so don’t slow yourself down during your first draft. To attempt editing before you even finish the complete story would have you running in circles, and would be a complete detriment to your progress.
Read On Writing by Stephen King. I don’t care if you purchase the book, borrow it from a friend, or go to the library—just read it! This book offers invaluable information for writers to improve their craft. I also find the book very motivating, despite King’s no bullshit approach to explaining. This is a book that I always keep on hand, and I read whenever I feel like I need a swift kick to get back on track.
Write what you love. This tip sounds like a no brainer, but it’s easy to forget what’s important. Don’t write a story that you aren’t interested in just because you think the topic would please someone else. What’s the point in writing any fiction if you can’t write with passion? Write the stories that you want to tell, and stories that you would want to read.
Hope you found these tips to be informative. You can subscribe if you don’t want to miss future writing tips, and don’t forget to keep reading and writing!