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Monday 11 November 2013

Three Top Tips To Help With Your Writing...

Power of Words by Antonio Litterio.jpg: Antonio Litterio derivative work: InverseHypercube
By Antonio Litterio

1. Get Hooked – expressing yourself in words is better for you than eating sugar, and just as addictive. Instead of eating cake at coffee-time, start keeping a diary or jot down ideas for your novel. Make writing your new regular, unbreakable daily habit. It doesn’t matter if you can only afford to spend a few minutes on it. Consistency is the key. Set aside some time every day to write. The amount of time you can spend has less to do with your results than your determination. Remember, the more you put into your work, the more you’ll get back in return. Nothing beats the satisfaction of finishing a project. If you can only schedule enough spare time to make notes, do it. Nothing you write will be wasted. When you finally sit down to enjoy a good, long writing session, you’ll never need to waste time waiting for inspiration. You’ll have loads of things down on paper already. The words will be ready to dance across that beautiful blank page for you. The feeling that gives is better than the icing on any cake!  

2. Get Organised – dedicate an area where you can write every day. It doesn’t have to be large. Just make sure there’s enough room to keep your books (see Tip Three) and paperwork to hand. A permanent space is best. If you have to share your writing refuge with other people or projects, keep your things in a cardboard box so you can stow them away easily at the end of each session. It’s amazing how fast paperwork builds up, so you’ll need some way of keeping track. Use large envelopes labelled with chapter headings or character names to keep everything in order.

3. Be Prepared – make sure your writing kingdom’s well stocked, and don’t let anyone borrow your stuff. They say they’ll give it back, but can you guarantee they will? It’s better not to weaken. Show them (nicely, of course!) how to be better organised and get their own supplies, like you. You’ll be giving them a lesson in responsibility. At the most basic level you’ll need plenty of pencils (pens run out, or leak), a sharpener, an eraser, and paper. Sometimes nothing beats that connection with words which appear from a sharp point onto a real surface under your hand. Get a good dictionary, a thesaurus and a book on punctuation such as Getting The Point by Jenny Haddon and Elizabeth Whiteside,  or Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss. Don't rely on the library for  books you'll need all the time. While you can use online resources, try looking for cheap second-hand copies of real books. They'll help with your off-line sessions, or when your computer fails. That’s when the best ideas always arrive!

If you've enjoyed these tips, you can find more at christinahollis.com Visit here and you can click to sign up for my newsletter, which will bring news about my next release and a whole lot more.

Friday 1 November 2013

Three Top Tips For Writers...

By Henriette Brown
1. When you first start writing, keep an open mind. Try anything, until you find the perfect match between your own personal style and one particular story-telling genre. Finding the right outlet for your writing voice is a bit like falling in love with a pair of shoes in the shop window. If you try them on and they don’t fit, you know they'll be a daily agony - it doesn't matter how much you invest in them. Look elsewhere, and you'll save yourself a lot of pain. Writing is hard enough, without having to struggle against your own nature every step of the way.
2. Find yourself a successful mentor, preferably through your local creative writing group. You need someone who will be honest about your work, and suggest ways you can improve. If you can't find any face-to-face guidance, go on line and check out popular writers whose work you admire. Then you'll see if they’ve produced any guides to writing that will help you. Kate Walker's 12 point Guide to Writing Romance and Liz Fielding’s Little Book of Writing Romance are both brilliant, and will take you step-by-step through the process of crafting the novel of your dreams. 

3. Writing is a solitary business. Take care you don’t become too self-absorbed. Sometimes it feels like you're the only person struggling to meet a word count, deadline, or grappling with characters who won't grow and a plot that won't arc. Meet up with like-minded people online for a new perspective. Check out
Facebook and Twitter, of course - they're brilliant, but can take up a lot of time. Visit your local library to find out about local creative writing groups, or join The Romantic Novelists' Association or the Romance Writers of America. Both organisations provide lots of useful information and contacts.

If you've enjoyed these tips, there are more at christinahollis.com Visit here and you can click to sign up for my newsletter, which will bring news about my next release and a whole lot more!