Saturday, June 13, 2009

Cynthias tips till nybörjare (och nystartare)

Här är lite tips från ett nyhetsbrev från Cynthia Morris, som hon skickade ut i april i år:

1. Don't blab. New writers are always excited about their projects. This is good! But ideas and energy turns sour when you talk about it all the time to anyone who will listen. When you blab your ideas, you lose energy to write them. Save them for the page. Be a little mysterious and write, don't tell.

2. Don't be overambitious about scheduling writing time. Start small and plan little bits of writing every week or every day. You may plan 15 minutes for three days per week. Or ten minutes every day. Start small and build. New writers often think they need hours or it's not worth it. Just the opposite: when you schedule big chunks of time, you're more likely to avoid it altogether.

3. Don't spend all of your time reading about writing. You will know when you are procrastinating with books. When the urge to write comes upon you, and you go to read instead of write, you know you need to wean off the books for a while.

4. Don't isolate yourself. Find other writers who are also writing. You can find them in workshops, at readings, in libraries and bookstores. You can put a notice up in bookstores and ask for writing buddies. Connect with your writing tribe.

5. Don't compare yourself to others if it makes you feel bad. If you make a comparison and it propels you to do more writing, the comparison has been useful. If it just makes you feel like giving up writing, give up comparing instead.

6. Don't stop yourself. If something you are doing stops you from writing, it's not working. Reading, wandering, comparing yourself to others, reading books and thinking, I'll never do that, can all prevent you from writing. This is a simple formula: what stops you needs to change or be abandoned.

7. Don't take writing classes and think that that means you are writing. You have to follow up this initial effort up with actual writing. Use the momentum of the class to continue writing once the class is over.

8. Don't get discouraged. Writing is a long process. Give yourself plenty of time to strengthen your writing muscles and build a writing practice that works for you.

9. Don't judge your writing. Give your words a bit of space before you bring a critical eye to the page. We're often the worst critics of our writing, especially when we first write them. Leave a day or at least several hours before going in with the red pen.

10. Don't give up. I've been writing steadily for fifteen years and I still have a lot to learn. I am always finding ways to improve my writing and am grateful for the challenge to be better. It takes time to hone a craft, so steady on!

3 comments:

Evas värld said...

Johanna! Tack för att du så generöst delar med dig av allt du läser. De här skrivtipsen var uppmuntrande och jag skriver verkligen under på allt hon säger! Härligt att se det formulerat! Eva

Johanna Wistrand said...

Kul att du gillar mina tips! Själv älskar jag att förmedla, som i bloggen :-)
Cynthia är underbar, jag träffade henne i våras på konferens i London. Jag rekommenderar hennes böcker och blogg!

marie levin said...

tack för denna sida..inspirerande och som eva ovan sa: generöst...gött!
Hälsning från värmland/marie