Thursday, November 15, 2018

Wisdom Gleaned Lately

Zestful Blog Post #290

I didn’t ask permission to share this stuff here, and I don’t have exact quotations, and I can’t in every case remember who quite said what. But most of these items are from writers I’ve encountered at events at Ringling College of Art and Design, as well as conferences and meetings in the last six months or so. Some are from me, and some you’ve no doubt heard from others before, especially this first one:

·       Don’t overthink it. (Don’t we all love that?)
·       Longer passages of quick dialogue can do two things:
o   Make for plentiful white space on the page, which is easy to read; and
o   Take up pages in a printed book, making it look meatier than it might be. (Heh-heh.)
·       Time spent getting to know your characters on a deep level is time well spent.
·       It’s hard to make money as an author.
·       Some authors make great money. The foolproof how-to formula is unclear.
·       It’s easy to get published.
·       It’s hard to get published.

[Gotta climb ev'ry mountain...]

·       Social media sucks and does nothing for your career.
·       Social media is great and can help your career a lot.
·       One gets lonely.
·       Collaborating with other authors (writing books with them) can be:
o   Fraught with icky drama, making you not want to do it anymore, like when somebody else claims credit for your idea, just the same as in other group projects we’ve all dealt with.
o   Really great, especially if it’s just one other person you like and trust.
·       Most of us are too uptight.
·       You should stick with one genre and make a name there.
·       Experiment widely in different genres if you feel like it; you never know when you’ll hit it big with some new thing.
·       A pseudonym can jump-start your career in a new direction.
·       To write a good action scene, such as a fight:
o   Give a quick overview, then
o   Get into some deep detail, then
o   Pull back again to the ‘long shot,’ so to speak.
o   Rinse and repeat.
·       Every one of us is walking—or running, or plunging, or staggering—along a different path. No two careers are exactly alike.
·       Therefore I say: Let’s trust our own paths, rocks and wrong turns and all. Because we’re getting somewhere. And sometimes the view is great.

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  1. And they're all true . . . Really.

    1. I think I’ve heard them all at one time or another at conferences, online classes, in blogs, or in writing books or articles. The upshot seems to be that it’s up to us to make of our writing career what we want it to be, and work as hard as we can to make that happen. I do believe some people are just naturally more talented than others, just as in any other art. The rest of us just have to work harder. Plus, some days writing is easy and some days it’s harder. So yes, it’s true.

  2. What's the opposite of overthinking it?? Ha. If we didn't overthink it, maybe we're not really writers. Just thinkin'.....

    1. Yeah, I guess overthinking is an occupational hazard. But the opposite is free, joyful flow that goes so well you don't even know where it's coming from... XO

  3. Hey, I'm reading your "You've Got a Book in You." It's very positive, playful, creative, inspiring. No over-thinking! Love it!

    1. I'm thrilled, Patricia! I'd be forever grateful if you'd consider posting a quick rating/review. But regardless, keep us posted on your writing, OK?


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