Writing 101 with Liz
Updated: Jun 1, 2020
People tell me all the time, "I can't believe you wrote a book!" And then they follow it up with, "How do you do it?"
There are many blogging tips on the internet and many voices that will tell you the best way to become a writer. Along the way, I've picked up my own tips.
1.) Write what you know. It's a commonly used phrase but it's true. If you begin writing about a subject you are comfortable with, the words will flow easier. Once this happens, creativity kicks in!
2.) Use YOUR voice, not someone else. Write in the style that echoes your daily vernacular. If you go off trying to imitate Jane Austen or Henry James, the writing battle will become an uphill one. Writing is easier when it's a style that's natural to you.
3.) Create a habit. Carving out specific times to write will help you reach your word count goal because your mind will be ready to focus on the task at hand. Furthermore, create a writing schedule with a task goal for each day you write, and your first draft of a manuscript will be done before you know it!
4.) Focus Space. While TV & Film make writing in a hippy and trendy coffee nook look appealing and what an artist/writer should do... it's not an applicable idea for everyone. I personally find it very distracting and end up people watching. I recommend finding a space that is comfortable, quiet and practical for you to set up your writing space in.
5. Blocked? Be Practical. If you're coming down with a case of writer's block, be practical with your carved out writing schedule and find another way to work on your book. Research, cover design, editing - all of these things are wonderful uses of your time that are 100% practical. Working on a book is working on a book, not necessarily adding a new chapter every single time you sit down.
6.) Start to Finish? I've never sat down and wrote a book in chronological order from start to finish. Often times I get an idea and it's in the middle of a storyline, so I start there! Fun fact? Often times my prologue is the very last chapter written in each of my books! AND, not every chapter makes the final cut either!
7.) No Force. Don't force a storyline just to meet a deadline. Trust in this: readers will know. If the story doesn't make sense, ask a friend to read what you have so far and have them give you their feedback. It may open a door you hadn't even seen before.
8.) Feedback. I'm an indie author and I don't have a full time editor to give me their thoughts. Thus, I ask for friends to give me their feedback. With each draft, I see the story grow and get more & more excited about developing each character. I also like finding out if the foreshadowing worked in some cases...
9.) Theme it. Finding a theme for your story is very important. Is there a message? A brand new world you are creating? Details and a concise, clear storyline will help you create a theme, but so will consistency. Track your notes on locations, characters and relationships in your story and make certain the message is clear.
10.) Don't be afraid. Not every book sells and not every story is liked. It's just the cold hard facts of the literary life. But, if you're willing to put your work out there in the world, YOU should be proud of yourself! It's an accomplishment and a lot of work that you've achieved. Be proud of yourself and don't be afraid of what others may think of your book.
Again, there are many blogging tips on the internet and many voices that will tell you the best way to become a writer. Ultimately, you'll pick up your own habits and become the strongest writer you can be.
Find Liz Rau books on Amazon (and Kindle), Barnes & Noble , Books a Million, Smashwords, Goodreads and More!