How To Write: Top Ten

Yesterday I wrote a post about the difficulties of writing. I received a lot of encouragement from everyone who likes my writing. Since I am actually a great writer (according to you) I thought I’d share my tips for writing well:

How To Write

10. Quit your job. This may seem counterproductive, but there is nothing like desperately needing an income to force those words out. If you are nervous about quitting, bring a laptop to your job and write constantly there. They will fire you in no time.

9. Self-publish. It doesn’t matter what you self-publish. Grocery list? Self-publish. Letter to your sister? Self-publish. Hopefully you get my point. Having something already published looks good when you are submitting stuff to publishers. Even letters to the IRS can be self published, so get after it.

8. Stalk your favorite authors. This could potentially put you in jail, but think of the material you would get. You could write things like “What I Learned From Stalking” or “How to Survive the First Few Weeks in Jail”.

7. Kidnap your favorite author. This goes along with the previous tip. If your stalking is successful, you should find an opportunity to kidnap him/her. Having a dungeon set up in your basement will be helpful, but is not necessary. Any room with a door and no windows can be a perfect place. Once they are in your possession, torture writing tips out of them, or have them ghost write for you.

6. Write every day. This tip is all over the place, recommended by tons of experts. The key to writing every day is to tie a pen/pencil to your fingers. Then when you are cleaning the counters, you are writing. When you do laundry you are writing. I’ve never read anything that says the “writing every day” thing needs to be real words.

5. Read writing tips. There are so many tips out there for writers you could spend a lifetime reading them. In fact, you might as well give up on writing a book because you will be much too busy reading other people’s stuff.

4. Don’t sleep. Some of my best pieces have been written in the middle of the night. Do whatever drugs are needed to keep you up. Legal or illegal, find something that keeps you awake. As a bonus, you might get some housework done that you’ve been putting off.

3. Become a recluse. Leaving your home typically means leaving your manuscript, so rarely do it. I understand that some of you are not as fortunate as I am (being disabled), so if the temptation to leave your home is too strong, become too fat to fit through your door. Remember to work your fingers out so they don’t become too fat to type.

2. Don’t expect immediate results. Writing is a painfully slow process. First there is the time spent thinking of what you will write about. Then the actual production of the work. Submitting to publishers and hearing back will take years. Everything should fall into place after you are dead though, so at least you have something to look forward to.

1. Have a blog. Not only will this give you a great place to get your frustrations out, but you can get some free critiques and of course, tons of encouragement. Even for silly things like top ten lists.

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36 thoughts on “How To Write: Top Ten

    • Good point. Yes, hiring someone is definitely okay.

      You can also try luring them to your home. Meat on a stick only works for some writers. Traps baited with alcohol are a safer bet.

    • I was thinking “The Collector” but that wasn’t an author. I think she was a librarian though. Close, but no cigar.

      For the dead authors, you start séances. Make sure you invite plenty of people, take out a lot of ads in different papers and call news stations. If you get enough people to think you are crazy, you can guarantee a publishing contract.

  1. So now you are writing 500 word essays on how to write to people who may not be good at it? This just seems cruel. Rub our faces in it, why don’t you? Words pour out of you like stuff pours out of both ends of a spring-breaker after a bad week in Tiajuana. We don’t all have a gift. Some of us just have a keyboard…

  2. OK so I’m on the right track so far – I’m currently between assignments so not working & since I quit smoking I’m getting fatter – soon I won’t be able to fit through the door, then hubby can quit bugging me to get back to work. I write something every day but sometimes it’s just a grocery list (Ode to Peas!)

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