Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Top Ten Writing Tips From PPW Members by Julia Allen

Top Ten Writing Tips from PPW Members
 By Julia Allen
As writers, we each have our own unique process for getting words on the page. Sometimes it comes easily, and at other times it’s like trying to put toothpaste back in the tube. There are so many great books on the art and craft of becoming a better writer that it can seem daunting to choose which one to turn to when we feel stuck.

At the recent PPW Volunteer Retreat, I had the chance to pick the brains of 10 fellow writers for the one piece of writing advice they felt was the most valuable.

1. Write to please yourself. Don’t try to write to a formula or a trend. —Richard Burns

2. Put yourself on a schedule. If you’re writing a first draft, sit down with a calendar and assign yourself a number of pages or words to finish each day. —Beth Groundwater

3. Meet other writers. Getting together with other writers is always a source of motivation and encouragement. —Fleur Bradley

4. Volunteer to house-sit for other people. This way, you can have many mini writing retreats. —Jodi Anderson (aka Jodi Dawson)

5. Join a good critique group. However, don’t let them comb the voice out of your novel. –Karen Lin

6. Learn, learn, learn. Always be open to what other writers say, in person, in books, at workshops. —Barb Dyess

7. Realize it isn’t easy. —Ron Heimbecher.

8. Stay with the project you’re working on. Be persistent. —Deb Buckingham.

9. They’re just words. Don’t be afraid to put them down on paper, or to cut them. You can change any, or all of it, later. —Barb Nickless

10. Just write! Just as musicians get better at performing by practice, and actors get better by rehearsing, writers get better by writing. —Mario Acevedo
Originally appeared in The Pikes Peak Writer, Volume VIII, Issue 5, September,October 2009

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