All writers know that writing is fraught with questions. For example, my question of the moment is; what will I write next?!
I’m sure most writers can identify with this at some point. Particularly if you have just finished one book or project and you’re not sure what you would like to move onto next.
I’ve just finished my third children’s book. But I’ve no idea what to do next. Do I write another children’s book for a similar age group? Or maybe, I would like to write for older children? Or, should I take a mini-break from writing for children and write for adults or even have a stab at a screenplay?
Oh, so many questions.
For me, beginning a project is one of the most difficult aspects to writing. Ernest Hemmingway once replied when asked what was the most frightening thing he had ever encountered, he said, “A blank sheet of paper.”
Others can sit down and write away and instead fear the re-writes. It’s different for everyone, but I thought today I would share some writing tips from some great writers, which would apply to all writers, no matter the question or obstacle standing in their way.
1. Ernest Hemingway advised that each day’s work should only be interrupted when you know where to begin again the next day. This helps any writer avoid the terror of facing a blank page.
2. Kurt Vonnegut said, “Find a subject you care about and which you in your heart feel others should care about. It is this genuine caring, and not your games with language, which will be the most compelling and seductive element in your style.”
3. Anne Lamott in her fabulous book “Bird by Bird,” explains that the secret of writing is to get started, and in order to get started you need to break the overwhelming task of writing into small manageable tasks. Then get going with the first task.
4. William Stafford said: “Every day I get up and look out the window, and something occurs to me. Something always occurs to me. And if it doesn’t, I just lower my standards.”
5. “The art of writing is the art of applying the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair,” Mary Heaton Vorse said. Good point:)
What do you find most difficult about writing? Or do you have any tips you would like to share?