6 Writing Tips for Aspiring Writers:
a guest post by Melisa Marzett
How to start writing is the main question for those people who tend to write.
Many would want their writing to be pleasant and easy to read. There are many interesting things within the interviews of successful writers. They speak on how it goes daily, which habits are useful to have and which ruin style and careers. These tips are rolling up, turning into practitioner guides for aspiring authors. If you have decided on practicing in literature, the following six writing tips may help you.
1. The best way to overcome the hurdle of a blank page...
“I WRITE BECAUSE WORDS JUST COME OUT OF ME. BESIDES, I GET PAID FOR THAT. SOMETIMES I DESCRIBE WHAT I DO AS SLEEPING WITH A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN WHO PAYS ME WHEN IT IS DONE. I LIKE IT.”
Unlike Charles Bukowski, writing is some serious work for most authors. It takes a great deal of mental energy, makes one`s memory work, sometimes even causes a feeling of sensibilities, when one tries to be honest in what s/he does.
It is hard to make oneself write, but if fear comes along, that your work is going to be judged by the world or public, a writer might throw in the towel with their career, and one never gets started.
In order to overcome the feeling, let yourself write badly and simply start.
Anne Lamott, the author of the book titled Bird by Bird, wrote a sketch on why authors should start with bad drafts. Anne said that she knows many wonderful writers whose books are in good demand. All of them do not feel a constant enthusiasm and are never ready to write. Moreover, their drafts are not that easy to read.
Knowing this makes it easier to start. Just begin writing and it does not matter how badly it goes. First thoughts might come out in a hit-or-miss way, clumsily and cacophonic but maybe it is even for good? Many authors start their path to success quite so anyway.
2. Do not use clichés!
A cliché is an accepted form of grammar, well-worn phrases which are oftentimes used in literature. By putting a cliché into your writing, you will not capture your reader, will not make him/her think, as long as the reader could hear or read these phrases thousands of times by now.
Of course, we all often hear set expressions, such as 'overwhelming majority', 'it stands to mention', 'for the moment' and others, which is why they are just put on hold in the head and spill over onto paper almost without your participation.
It influences the way to read a lot; the more familiar thoughts and notions we come across reading a book, the more we skip and as a result, it becomes uninteresting to read.
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The best way to get rid of a cliché is to explain familiar phrases in a different way. The main thing is to find a happy medium between a complicated language and too simple and commonplace expressions of ideas.
3. Write as you speak.
“WRITING ONLY, BUT NOT DREAMING OF IT, FORMS A STYLE OF ONE`S OWN.”
American writer and screenwriter Elmore Leonard was talking about a prior importance of a reader but not guides and classes on writing the 'right' content. Never place paradigmatic writing above a reader`s interest and ability to capture his/her attention.
“IF IT SOUNDS LIKE WRITING, I RE-WRITE IT.”
Imagine as if a person you are talking to sits right in front of you, and write as if you are talking to this person for real.
4. Use short words, sentences and paragraphs.
You may use long sentences while talking, but when writing, try not to use them that often. When the content is ready, you can make it shorter. ‘A father of advertisement’ and successful copywriter David Ogilvy advises to USE SHORT WORDS, SENTENCES AND PARAGRAPHS. NEVER WRITE MORE THAN TWO PAGES ABOUT ONE SUBJECT.
To a greater extent, it concerns not editing but the simplicity of the writing. Provide with information as short and simple as possible using short words.
Remember that two great masters, William Shakespeare and James Joyce were writing insightful and childishly simple sentences.
5. Try to write less, not more.
When you feel comfortable, you've started to write and created your first draft, it is time to edit. Soon enough you understand that it takes more time than even writing itself. It is good if you have someone who can read your work or you can read it aloud by yourself. This is how all the mistakes can be seen better.
While editing, you abstain from writing and estimate what you have written objectively like a strict editor. Pay attention to how well you express your thoughts, whether you have long words, confusing sentences and unnecessary explications.
Kurt Vonnegut (American writer-satirist) used a good rule for editing:
“NO MATTER HOW BEAUTIFUL A SENTENCE SEEMS TO BE, IF THERE IS NOTHING NEW OR USEFUL, DELETE IT.”
6. Keep on writing no matter what.
The more you write, the better your writing is. Your style becomes sharper; you see the process of writing more. Even when you feel a deficit of ideas, just keep on writing, and it may become the beginning of a work of genius.
DO NOT WRITE A LOT; WRITE MORE OFTEN.
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If you want to be better at something, practice. You are going to need discipline, in order to continue writing when you do not feel like it and to put it on hold when you feel it is enough.