Monday, September 20, 2010


Practice makes perfect, someone said and it rings very true for writing too. A good writer, leave alone a great one can never let a day pass without writing a few sentences at least. Writing every day of the week makes it more of a routine and definitely kills that writers' enemy of old - The writer's block.
What did you write today? It might be an online article, a blog entry, a page of a novel, an awesome poem or short story or even a comment on this blog. You have written! It doesn't matter how little you write, the idea is to get yourself moving, the trick is to hang on and never give up, and the best way of hanging on is writing!
I do not deny that times may be tough, that you may be very busy, but honestly, finding time to write a few sentences can not be an issue. All you need to post a sentence or two is a whopping....did I say whopping? Well you need less than five minutes every day, and that is more than what we spend on the facebook, isn't it?
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Friday, September 3, 2010


A good writer knows how to balance his or her scenes so as not have long stretches of boredom and short fast paced scenes. Readers do not want to read action packed scene that goes for a page or two and then descend into a lengthy slumber that bore them to death.
To avoid such, a writer should try to balance scene intensity and or pace. Divide your scenes into short spurts of fast paced action mixed with those slow moving sections.
This doesn't have to be the order with which you write. You can write the slow moving scenes for as long as you can and do the same for fast paced action but later go back and try to cut them into shorter pieces and mix them for greater effect.
Even the best of all thriller writers have boring or slow moving scenes. They write paragraphs that move slowly than the average pace of the entire story but they use the trick I just explained to keep their readers hooked and or interested in the story.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Are you one of those writers who have slow winding starts to a novel or short story? There is only one word to describe your writing: Boring!
No matter how well a book is written, however good a story is, writers who can not capture their readers within the first few paragraphs will lose them almost immediately. When you lose a reader at that most opportune moment, chances that he or she will ever want to read your work are very slim.
Writers need to start their long stories with a big bang. Remember this is how the earth began and that is probably how it will end. Start your story in the thick of things, with everyone running helter-skelter, with a lot happening at a fast pace, only then, only then can you go back in time and start those slow winding descriptions to build the readers suspense and hook him or her to the entire novel or story.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Many writers, especially the young ones often think they can walk around unkempt and get away with it, they think being creative means being dirty, almost uncouth. How stupid. Walking around without a sense of organization presents mental turmoil that contributes to your writer's block.
If you have not been able to write much of late, if you are one of those people that strangely believe that genius should walk around wrapped in junk, it may be time to grow up.
Take your time and groom yourself, take your timer and arrange everything on your desk. That dust, those hanging cobwebs in your study, and the multiple yet to be shelved files that you keep around you all the time are not required.
All you need are concrete writing plans and schedules. Decide on the projects you want to work on in the next few days or weeks and get down to business. Forget how everyone else with genius behaves and just be yourself for a single day, stop finding influence in the wrong company by thinking that only by drinking alcohol like fish would water can you get your act together.
you can write pretty good stuff if you put your mind to it. But part of the discipline required in becoming a great writer is organizing yourself physically, mentally and emotionally.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Most writers grapple with this issue almost on a daily basis. The issue surrounds whether to use tough sounding words or go for simpler words that are well understood by majority of readers. To answer the question I will try to go back to the sole purpose of writing. Why do we write? Who are we writing for?
Writers write in order to communicate. This communication may inform, educate or entertain but the chief aspect is to pass a message across. If you use a language that will not be understood by majority of readers, then you end up failing in your sole responsibility as a writer and that is why writers need to always go for words that can be easily understood.
Wrongly using or misusing high sounding words that may mean nothing in the end present a writer as stupid instead of helping him or her to appear academic.
Closely knit with the issue of vocabulary is the audience you are writing for. Tough may mean a different thing to kindergarten students compared to university professors! Good luck!

Monday, August 30, 2010


Look at books and book-men. Is the world producing great writers like it used to? Is the world producing serious authors like it used to churn out before the rise of the internet. Maybe and again maybe not but it is important to note that the internet has somehow destabilized the whole profession of writing.
The ability to publish almost anything from literature to sensitive medical information seems to have eroded the very creativity that was the hallmark of great writing. No longer do we have value for truly great information, no longer do we have any time left for what is hidden in the books for we can read and write anything online and a lot more people are too lazy to appreciate any serious stuff coming out of a few writers, very few readers have the patience to delve into truly great information, they want an easy way out, and online writing seems to offer just that. Has it killed creativity?
Has online writing had an effect on the truly great writing of the past or have we stopped literary appreciation in search of gossip?

Sunday, August 29, 2010


Many writers loath the idea of planning their writing projects. My challenge has always been the same. If you are a writer, you should write, and that means setting writing goals and accomplishing them.
If you know what you want, then you must go for it by developing a feasible plan or writing schedule. If you decide on writing at least 300 words a day, make it some kind of routine and write the 300 words. If you fail for any reason to write 300 words, make it an obligation to write 600 words on the following day.
It is only be developing such a routine like schedule that writers can jump from being amateurs to professionals who are proud of their work as writers, its only by sticking to such professionalism that writers can build their portfolio and earn from their writing.
You should ask yourself how some people were able to write 500 novels and didn't die of exhaustion - Strategy and nothing else. Those writers had a well developed writing schedule that they stuck to until they succeeded.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Writers grapple with very many things, the leading of course being where to publish. Traditional publishers are making lots of money from book sales and only pay 8 - 12% of the total book sales. If your book sells for 10 dollars a copy, the publisher gives you less than a dollar, i.e. 80cts and keeps $ 9.20. Isn't that impressive?
The advantage of publishing the traditional way is the fact that most reputable publishers have full time editors that will assess your work and make suggestions that will make it better in the long run. They also stock your book and market it directly to distributors such as bookshops for which you do not pay.
The disadvantage is the time taken for them to release your book. For most, textbooks have the highest priority and it may take two years before seeing your published product even after being accepted.
If you have no money but lots of patience and believe in the quality of what you have written, traditional book publishing may be the best way to do it even though it benefits the publisher much more than it benefits the writer.

Friday, August 27, 2010


Forget your experiences for a while and just write in third person. Sticking to first person narration has a way of limiting your point of view and that of the reader when you should be able to cover much more ground by playing God.
When you write in third person, you have everything that is happening before you. you have the freedom to manipulate everybody and everything that is happening. Sometimes the way the story turns surprises you the writer just like it would your reader and its this surprise, its these twists and turns that help to glue the reader along.
The element of surprise and therefore suspense disappears once you put yourself at the center of the story and may actually build some negativity in the mind of the reader before he or she completes the story.
When the lead character in your story or novel does not have the best of behavior or is an outright crook that you created, telling his story in first narration may actually crucify you the writer instead since readers have a problem divorcing the writer from the narrator in first person.
I don't deny the fact that some great stories have been written in the first person but as a caution, they are very few and limited as well in scope. To avoid much problems, write in the third person until your experience is bold enough to warrant a shift to the first person.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Writing without a role model or set of role models is like captaining a radar-less ship. A writer needs to have some great writers whether contemporary or past legends unto whom he or she looks towards for inspiration.
Who is your favorite writer? Who do you look at when in need of inspiration? Even the greatest writers of all time had their inspiring legends and those writing legends too had their favorites. You need to keep in touch with the best in writing for you to write better each passing day.
My favorite author still remains Leo Tolstoy, even though a few other great writers aren't far behind either. When I feel lost, when words are not coming, when I can't find inspiration elsewhere, one look at a Tolstoyan text is all I need to start writing again.
Who is your favorite? Think about it.