Top Tips For Authors To Overcome Writer’s Block

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Anytime you sit down at the keyboard to punch out a few lines on your next project; there is always the risk that you cannot find the right groove or inspiration. The more you struggle to get the words out, the more frustrating and challenging it can become. Minutes turn to hours, and hours to days, and still nothing.

Writer’s block is not a unique situation; every writer, no matter how skilled and accomplished, will find times when inspiration seems lost. One of the tricks to being a successful writer is knowing where to look to get back that inspiration.

Finding the inspiration for writing is possible. Let’s take a look at some tips to overcome writer’s block:

1. Change of scenery

Start with something simple. Sometimes it is just about getting away from your desk and having a change of scenery. Go out into nature, take a walk. This action will help you relax, and a relaxed mind can more easily come up with cohesive thoughts and better sentences than a tense mind.

2. Passion

Identify what you are personally passionate about. Is there an issue in which you are primarily interested? Your interests may resonate with others, which would give you a willing audience wanting to read more on the topic.

From your passions, you may glean an outline for a book and begin to flesh it out the more you think about it. From your desires, a book may take seed and blossom.

3. Fresh & Unique

Search beyond what is considered conventional. Your next book should be filled with new ideas, something unique and exciting. Publishers look for book outlines that are out of the box, a book with a unique presentation or discussion. Try and be fresh.

4. Special Features

Look at the books of some of your favourite authors. Do they use a particular technique or feature you can emulate with your topic? What was it about those books that drew you in and begged you to read?

5. New Impressions

Maybe you need a new perspective. Do something new to jostle your thought process. Try something extreme such as skydiving or scuba diving; if that’s a bit too out there for you, go hiking or finally visit that odd restaurant with a different ethnic cuisine. New impressions and perspectives always have an effect on inspiration.

6. Freewriting

Freewriting is writing about a certain topic for 10-15 minutes, and can be used as a way to find a breakthrough in writer’s block. It is intended to get your thoughts flowing freely. You start with a prompt that could be an emotion, a place, or an experience.

Take that prompt and write about it for a short period. It is suggested to do this on a regular basis just to keep you thinking and writing and growing. An excellent example of the freewriting technique can be found here on wikiHow.

7. Interviews

Talking with a friend may sometimes help you identify a topic or area that is ready for you to explore and write. You can brainstorm. Discuss ideas with friends and try to imagine a storyline or plot for your new book. Your friends may have suggestions for you. It might be something you cannot see for yourself. Good friends are hard to find, so if you have one or two, trust their judgment.

There may be a subject matter expert in your region whom you could interview on the topic you have identified. Collect all the information you gain from these interviews. Organise the thoughts and ideas to determine if there is anything worth including in your new book.

8. Professional Help

If you have your topic but just cannot get the words to flow, you may need help from a writing professional. It is not about someone else writing the whole book, but it could be they give you some ideas on one particular topic which would be just enough to get the juices of your brain flowing to take over the project.

9. Inspiration from Other Writers

Sometimes it is beneficial to revisit the work of other successful writers. More than likely, great authors have gone through dry spells just as you have and can offer a nugget of wisdom to point you in the right direction. A great place to start is by looking up some of their great quotes about writing.

10. Sleep

One of the age-old suggestions for many crossroads in life is to sleep on it. That can be true with writing. You may have a few thoughts or ideas that just won’t gel. Maybe sleeping on it will be helpful.

As you go to bed thinking of your book and the ideas surrounding it you may have dreams that give you the inspiration you need.

Conclusion

Be reassured, writer’s block will not last forever. Certainly, it can be frustrating while you are in the middle of it. But by putting into practice some of the suggestions above, you will change your focus from writer’s block and put it back into writing. Just that movement alone could do the trick.

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Via: https://www.justpublishingadvice.com/finding-inspiration-for-writing-a-bestseller

How to Overcome the Fear of Sharing Your Writing

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Keeping with the theme of fear, and overcoming it, here is some more great advice from blogger Leo Babauta for getting to grips with sharing your writing with the world, whether that’s blogging, writing short stories for magazines, or novel writing.

You’d think that after eight years of public blogging and writing books, I’d be completely free of fear when it comes to putting my writing out in public. You would, of course, be wrong. Hitting “publish” still makes me nervous.

I still get little shivers of nervousness when I hit the “Publish” button on any post, and bigger fears still when I publish a print book or ebook. Writing in public is like speaking in public, if you’re doing it right. You’re baring your soul for all to judge, and there are few things as scary as that. But I’m here to tell you that it’s not only doable, it’s worth the effort to overcome that fear.

I’ve had several people write to me recently asking me about their fears about writing their blog. One person said they deleted their blog because they thought what they’d written was too lame. She said, “I thought it would be great if you could share how to put yourself out there in public and not worry about it.”

Well, I wish I could share the secret to not worrying about putting your writing in public, but I don’t think it exists. It’s scary as hell.

And yet I manage to do it nearly daily. Here’s how:

Write for One Person

You may have heard this advice before from more than one author. It’s impossible to write for thousands of people at once – that’s like trying to have a conversation with a stadium full of people. Who are you addressing? What tone do you use? What do they care about? So instead I follow Kurt Vonnegut’s advice to write for one reader (for him it was his sister). For me, it’s often different people I care about (my wife, one of my kids, a sister, a friend, a specific reader with a problem). I try to write like I’m talking directly to them, and though I change the style a bit to fit my blog’s style, that’s what I have in mind as I write. This has the added benefit of not being as scary – you’re just talking to one person.

Start with a Tiny Audience

When I started my site Zen Habits, my only readers were my mom and my wife (thanks you guys!). It wasn’t too scary to write for them. Then I got a few more readers, but by then my comfort level grew and the fear wasn’t overwhelming. Then I had 50 readers, and it was like a big group of friends, because everyone was supportive. By the time I had hundreds and then thousands of readers, I felt like I knew what I was doing (nevermind that I still don’t). One of the great things about blogging, for writers, is that your comfort level grows as your audience does.

Get Over the Idea of Perfection

We freeze up when we think of the idea that we need to write the “perfect” blog post or book, so that everyone thinks highly of us. I’m telling you now: there’s no such thing as perfect. Not everyone will think your writing is the greatest. And that’s okay. If you accept that there will be some things you do that are good, and others that are less than good, and that’s part of being a human; you can embrace a wider range of possibilities. You don’t have to hit a home run with every swing or score a goal with every touch.

Be Motivated by Learning

Why should you even attempt to write when it’s so scary? Because if you don’t do the things that you’re afraid of, you never learn anything. The best learning comes when you try something you don’t know how to do, and make mistakes, and then learn how to fix those mistakes. And then repeat. If you want safe, you give up on learning.

Be Motivated by Helping

I write because people have said it’s helpful. They like seeing how someone else solved a problem, or that it’s even possible to overcome, or at the very least they like knowing that there are other people out there going through the same thing. When people give me that kind of feedback, I feel great, and I can’t wait to do the scary thing again.

Writing is transformative. It changes you, and the reader. You get feedback from the reader and learn from them. You get accountability and you have to reflect on what you’re learning. You become greater from the attempt to overcome the fear.

There has been no greater achievement in my life, other than raising my kids, than overcoming the thunderhold of fear and writing for all of you.

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Via: http://lifehacker.com/how-to-overcome-the-fear-of-sharing-your-writing-in-pub-1646791988

Facing the Fear and Imposter Syndrome 

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One thing I really took home from the Festival of Writing 2017 is that all writers suffer from self-doubt – something refered to in Debi Alper’s Facing the Fear workshop as “The Doubt Demons”. One of these demons is Imposter Syndrome, and it’s the one that plagues me most.

People who feel like impostors believe they have somehow managed to fool others into thinking they are more capable, intelligent or talented than they ‘know’ themselves to be.”

Imposter Syndrome is the belief that you’re out of your depth, you’re not really capable, and it’s only a matter of time before other ‘real’ writers suss you out. If you suffer from this, as I do, you will regularly have thoughts that you aren’t good enough, that your writing is crap, and no one wants to read it anyway. Well, I’m here to tell you (and myself) that this is NORMAL and EVERY writer, even those who have had massive success and published loads of books, suffers with this exact same thing.

So how do we deal with it?

Well, I found a really good article from The Guardian that deals with this topic, in which Dr. Valerie Young, an internationally-recognised expert on impostor syndrome suggests the following:

1. Get to the root cause of your impostor syndrome

In order to understand why you’re not currently capable of acknowledging your skills and talents, you’ll need to explore where these feelings stem from. According to Young, feelings of low self-worth could relate to family expectations, but they could just as easily arise from studying in a competitive environment or working in creative fields. (See, what did I tell you – all creative’s suffer with this!)

2. Talk about your experience with someone you trust 

You’re probably familiar with the notion that voicing worries or fears out loud will lessen the power they hold over you. “I would encourage anyone feeling that they may be experiencing imposter syndrome to talk about it with someone they trust; whether that be a professional or someone from their own circle of family and friends.”

3. Reframe your thoughts with positive self-talk 

The aim of practicing positive self-talk is to learn how to manage your thoughts when an impostor moment strikes. “If you want to stop feeling like an impostor, you have to stop thinking like one,” advises Young. “We need to become consciously aware of the impostor thoughts running through our head so that we can reframe them the way a non-impostor would,” she says.

4. Learn to believe in your self-worth 

“What we want is to feel confident 24/7, but that’s not how it works,” says Young. Instead she suggests learning how to act with confidence, even when you’re feeling insecure, as a way of gradually changing how you feel internally.  Taking back control of a situation can also help you rediscover your self-worth.

These are all great suggestions for dealing with the demons. Personally, I find positive affirmations help – telling myself I can do this, and telling the demon to go to hell.

Other things you could try are:

  • Calling the demon out
  • Conversing with the demon
  • Reading back some of your best work to give yourself confidence
  • Distracting yourself with a good book or a positive piece of music that lifts your spirits
  • Talking to other writer friends who understand how it feels or can reassure you how great your writing really is

Perhaps use a combination of the above, or simply keep reminding yourself that the very fact you feel like an imposter means you are a real writer, and puts you in the same group as even the best published writers, who also suffer from the same affliction.

Here is a little anecdote from Neil Gaiman to illustrate my point, and hopefully make you feel better. It certainly helped me:

Some years ago, I was lucky enough to be invited to a gathering of great and good people: artists and scientists, writers and discoverers of things. And I felt that at any moment they would realise that I didn’t qualify to be there, among these people who had really done things.

On my second or third night there, I was standing at the back of the hall, while a musical entertainment happened, and I started talking to a very nice, polite, elderly gentleman about several things, including our shared first name. And then he pointed to the hall of people, and said words to the effect of, “I just look at all these people, and I think, what the heck am I doing here? They’ve made amazing things. I just went where I was sent.”

And I said, “Yes. But you were the first man on the moon. I think that counts for something.”

And I felt a bit better. Because if Neil Armstrong felt like an imposter, maybe everyone did. Maybe there weren’t any grown-ups, only people who had worked hard and also got lucky and were slightly out of their depth, all of us doing the best job we could, which is all we can really hope for.

You can read the full Guardian article here: https://jobs.theguardian.com/article/impostor-syndrome-and-how-to-overcome-it

Why You Should Join a Writing Group

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So you’ve decided you want to write. Perhaps you want to share a personal experience or record a little piece of history. There may be fascinating characters pushing at the edge of your consciousness and plot lines teasing you as they urge you to risk discovering where they may lead. Maybe you have already started down a writing path and you’ve arrived at a crossroads. Which way do you go and more importantly, how do you decide?

A good way to answer these questions is by joining a writing group. Here is what writer and journalist Kristin Prescott had to say on the matter:

As an emerging children’s author, I found myself at that intersection not so long ago. After almost 20 years as a news journalist I was eager to let loose the restraints of facts and current affairs and let my imagination take control. But I had no idea if I could do it. My first supporters were my family. They nudged me forward to the edge of the cliff – I took a leap of faith. I wrote starts of stories (and even a few endings), interesting scenes, character descriptions and a rhyming picture book text, but honestly, I was meandering around with no real direction. I knew I loved writing but I also knew I had a huge amount to learn. If I was going to make this my life I was going to need some help.  Enter Zena Shapter, award winning author and founder of Sydney’s Northern Beaches Writers’ Group (NBWG). Zena says she started the group in 2009 in order to fill her own writing needs.

“There were plenty of local support groups that acted as cheering squads for writers, but that wasn’t going to improve my writing. I wanted serious feedback; and, since I was a full-time mum, I also wanted that feedback to be free. Starting my own group was the only way to achieve all that.”

The group meets every month and after taking some time to build my courage, I made the journey to Sydney’s Manly Wharf to meet them. It is a decision that has changed my life. The NBWG is just one of many writing groups in existence and as Zena explains, they play a crucial role for writers of all genres and abilities. Since forming the NBWG, Zena is being published more frequently and has won eight national writing competitions.

“I don’t think there will ever be an end to learning and improving as a writer, so I value every interaction I have with my writers’ group – learning from others’ experiences is so very valuable,” Zena says.

After just a single meeting, I was hooked. The critiques were thorough but ultimately positive and the members were encouraging and generous with their knowledge and experience. Soon after I joined, Zena put the call out for members interested in taking part in the “Write-a-Book-in-a-day” competition, raising money for children’s cancer charities. I’m sure mine was one of the first hands in the air. Not only did our group of ten manage to write, edit, illustrate and submit an 11,000 word children’s book in just 12 hours, our story Scribbles in the Dark also won National Best Book, National Best Illustrations and we raised the most money. As I stood at the awards ceremony to receive a certificate for the book I co-authored, I dared myself to think I might be able to do this after all.

Spurred on by my success, I decided to take on another challenge – National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). This time I was flying solo and I signed up to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Once again, it quickly became clear connecting with other writers was going to be key to success. Nick Hudson was the Sydney NaNoWriMo Municipal Liaison, and states being around other writers definitely keeps you motivated.

Knowing you’re not alone, being able to discuss your story in a welcoming environment, and sitting beside people that you don’t have to explain why you write to, all makes you feel part of something bigger, he says.

NaNoWriMo is certainly big. This year 315,000 novelists signed up for the challenge worldwide. While each region held write-ins, it was social media that tied the entire community together.

“Social media is fantastic for connecting people,” says Nick. “Checking Facebook or Twitter, those are things that people are doing anyway because they have the habit.”

Throughout the month I noticed I wasn’t alone in relying on social media to help me through the motivational dips. NaNoWriMo driven online writing marathons and sprints, combined with encouraging comments from other participants keep pushing me forward. Then as the end of the month approached, the online writing community became one giant cheer squad. Whether a person had completed 500, 5000 or 50,000 words, they were given a big pat on their virtual backs. Nick says social media helped bring people together who might otherwise never have met.

“One of the things that people discovered doing NaNoWriMo this year, is that there’s lots of people just like them, who all want to talk about writing with someone, who go through periods of low confidence in their writing, but who persist with writing through the doubt and worry.”

I’m thrilled to say I’m one of the “winners” having passed the 50,000 word target. The first draft of my children’s fantasy series is now more than half written and I intend to have it finished early in the new year.

I think this quote, shared by Nick at the start of NaNoWriMo sums up why being part of a writing community is so important:

“Everyone you meet … knows you first and foremost as a writer.”

I’m still part of the Northern Beaches Writers’ Group and the members continue to help me tear down and build my writing back up. I’ve made some fantastic writer-friends who share their successes and perhaps more importantly their rejections. Through my connections I have been appointed the editor of the Society of Women Writers NSW quarterly magazine and e-news, one of the oldest and most prestigious writer’s groups in the country. I found the right path by connecting with other writers, in person and online and I hope you do too.

Via: https://writersedit.com/fiction-writing/every-writer-join-writers-group/

11 Tips For Finding Your Writing Zone 

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As the great Dorothy Parker once said, “writing is the art of applying the ass to the seat”. If only it were so simple. Every writer knows the struggle of setting aside the time to write, sitting down at the computer, opening a new document in your word processor of choice… and then realising that four hours have gone by and you’ve done nothing but watch unboxing videos on YouTube and stalk your ex’s hot cousin on Instagram. Writing is hard. Getting into the right frame of mind for writing is hard. Staying on task and not being distracted by your own crippling fear of failure is hard. So, here are a few tips for getting into the writing zone, because you can’t just sit around waiting for inspiration to strike (trust me, I’ve tried).

Of course, the “writing zone” looks different for everyone. Some writers work best in the dead of night, churning out page after page in a writing frenzy as they chug energy drinks and cookie dough. Other writers like to wake up at the crack of dawn to take a contemplative walk, or write every afternoon come rain or shine, or spend hours mumbling to themselves in their characters’ voices. There’s no wrong way to write. But here are some tips for finding a way into your own, personal writing zone:

1. Create a ritual

You don’t have to sacrifice a lamb to the writing gods every time you sit down to write, but sometimes it helps to have a small ritual transition between normal-you and writer-you. Maybe you light a candle, or make yourself a cup of coffee. Maybe you start by writing out a description of your week so far, or you put on your favourite shade of lipstick, or you straighten up your desk. Try out a couple of different rituals if you need to, and find what gets you psyched up/chilled out enough to write.

2. Find your ideal time of day

Are you an early riser or a night owl? Try setting aside writing time first thing in the morning, in the mid-afternoon, and right before bed to see which works best for you. Then stick with that time as much as you can. Sometimes finding your writing zone is as simple as finding the right hour of the day to start writing.

3. Find your ideal writing environment

If you know that you write best in a coffee shop, find a local coffee shop and become a regular. If you write best at your own desk, make sure that it stays relatively neat. If you like to write from bed, then… just do that, I guess. And if you can’t force yourself to start writing alone, find a writer buddy so the two of you can sit there and suffer together.

4. Find your music

Some people can only write in dead silence, others like to write while blasting out Celtic rock. Whatever your musical tastes, find a reliable writing playlist for yourself. You could try listening to the radio, movie soundtracks, or even classical music if lyrics are going to be too much of a distraction. Even if you don’t like to write with music, having a pump up or chill out song to get you into the zone can help focus your energy on your manuscript instead of work/stress/the guy who’s currently ghosting you.

5. Go off the grid

Put your phone on airplane mode. Turn off your computer’s Wi-Fi. Tell your friends you’ll be out of reach for the afternoon. If you need to, download a self-control app that’ll shut you out of distracting websites. I promise that you’ll survive life off the grid, and you’ll find it much harder to procrastinate without the world wide web at your fingertips.

6. Get out of the house

Remember outside? The air moves out there. It’s pretty great. If you’ve been spending the whole day in bed, or staring at a screen, or lying motionless on the floor, you might want to try going for an old fashioned walk. Grab a notebook and walk to the park/beach, or even around the block. Go for a run if that’s your thing. Go buy yourself a new flavor of ice cream. If you’re really feeling ambitious, leave your phone at home. Just getting out of the house and moving your body might help you refocus and start thinking about how to start that next chapter.

7. Give yourself incentives

Unfortunately, we don’t always have unlimited time to stroll through the park or try out different writing spots. Many of us have to work at “jobs” to earn “money” for “rent.” So if you need a shortcut to get yourself writing, you can always bribe yourself with some kind of treat: if you write 500 words today, you get to take a bubble bath, or watch the next episode of your favourite show; 1,000 words, you treat yourself to lunch; 5,000 words, you buy that cute item of clothing/new bag/pair of shoes you saw. (Use this method sparingly, though, because it gets expensive fast!)

8. Get rid of excess energy

I am forever making other people nervous with my pacing, foot jiggling, and hand wringing. If you tend to have a lot of excess energy, try jumping jacks or yoga before you dive back into writing. Stretch. Breathe. Invest in a standing desk, or a fidget spinner, or silly putty, so that you’re not just sitting motionless as you try to come up with ideas. You’ll be surprised just how much easier it is to stay in that zone when you’re not bursting with restless energy.

9. Read

If you just aren’t in the mood to write, try reading. Get another author’s voice inside your head, and you’ll find it a lot easier to start putting words on paper yourself. Every writer needs books to fuel their weird writer brains. And while it can be hard to go from watching TV or talking with friends to writing the next Great Novel, going from reading to writing is the most natural transition in the world.

10. Be consistent

Stick with it. If you train yourself to write at the same time every day, or every other day, or even every week, chances are it’s going to get easier and easier to get into the zone. Make your writing time sacred. It’s not just free time that you’re using to write, it’s your daily allotment of writing time, and it must be respected. Write something during every session, even if it’s just a list of ideas.

11. Write your way into the zone

Don’t underestimate the power of a good free-write. Not in the right creative mood to revise your poetry chapbook? Too bad. Just start writing whichever words come to your brain, until some of those words start to take shape as ideas. Free yourself from the need to write “well,” and just write. Write like nobody’s reading. Don’t beat yourself up if you write for a solid hour and none of it is usable. Count it as a success, because you were able to start writing and keep writing, and that’s no mean feat.

Happy writing!

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Via: https://www.bustle.com/p/11-tips-for-finding-your-writing-zone

5 Reasons Why You Should Share Your Writing 

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Writing means sharing. It’s part of the human condition to want to share things – thoughts, ideas, opinions.” – Paulo Coelho

All writers are in some part afraid or reluctant to share their writing with others, be it friends, family, colleagues, or strangers. However, writing is meant to be read. It’s meant to be performed, heard and experienced. So don’t keep it to yourself. This article is all about putting your writing out there and how it will help you learn and grow as a writer. Here are five reasons why you should share your writing…

1. Get Valuable Feedback

Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary.” – Winston Churchill

We can never be the best judge on our own writing – we’ve spent too much time with it and are too emotionally attached in most cases. This is why we need feedback. Having someone else read your work is a great way to find out what’s working and what’s not. Is the character ‘real’? Is the setting clear? Are the rhymes contrived or natural? A fresh mind will pick out flaws quickly, and note if the writing is confusing, convoluted, or careless. Sharing your draft is the only way of knowing if the message you want to convey with your writing is getting across to the reader.

It’s important though, to carefully choose who will see your writing. There’s no point forcing it upon friends who don’t read a lot or aren’t particularly interested in what you do, just as there is no point handing your manuscript over to your mother, who will most likely tell you it’s fantastic, no matter what she really thinks… These people may be better utilised as proof-readers. For true feedback, the best people to show your work to are your contemporaries, other writers who know the process and can give you valuable advice and clarification. If you have an editor, that’s even better. Otherwise, anyone with an insatiable appetite for literature will work as a general indicator.

2. Increase Your Confidence

It takes a lot of courage to show your dreams to someone else.” – Erma Bombeck

To write well one has to write confidently, but confidence can be cripplingly absent for a lot of writers. It’s never easy to hand over sweat-and-tear-soaked efforts for someone else to critique. However it is something all authors have to come to terms with. Constructive criticism is a vital stretch of road on the path to publication and is the only way of knowing what your strengths and weaknesses are. Gaining feedback will increase your understanding of your own writing and allow you to perfect your writing process. Reading your work aloud at groups or events will open up many opportunities for you to seek out the analysis you need from others. Not to mention the public speaking practice you’ll need for when you’re a bestselling author.

3. Learn and be Inspired

The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go”- Dr. Seuss

It’s well documented that children learn a lot from observing and playing with each other. The same can be said of writers. The more you read, the more ideas will spark and the more you’ll write. What better way is there to learn than from other writers of your generation?

If you ask your colleagues to take a look at your work it’s very likely they’ll request the same of you. Ideally this will lead to a regular exchange between a number of you. By networking in this way you’ll be reading the freshest material there is. Again this will provide you with feedback on your work. In this situation it will be especially useful as you will begin to see if particular issues with your writing crop up repeatedly, and you’ll learn what criticism you find most helpful. The best feedback is one that provides suggestions and options to any problems you may be having because it allows you to take a new line of thinking while reworking the material in your own way.

4. Influence An Audience

A drop of ink may make a million think.” – George Gordon Byron

Writing really can change the way people think and feel. It’s a major reason why writers write and readers read. They want to introduce and be introduced to new ideas and powerful emotions.

Your writing may mean as much to someone else as it does to you. We write about things that are important to us or things we feel strongly about. It may be something that scares us, a political stance, emotional turmoil, etc.  How many times have you been reading only to stop and think about how a particular paragraph reminded you of your own life? You can offer that same experience to others.

When you share your writing with someone they will ideally be able to tell you how it made them feel and how they were able to relate to it. Hearing this will instil in you the fact your writing isn’t just words, it’s an organism. The more people read it, the more it lives.

Even if you set out to write solely for yourself, to remain stable and centred, the potential to connect to a reader should be too much to ignore. It’s no exaggeration to say that words can save lives (some have completely changed this author’s perspective) and no one should hold that power within themselves.

5. It’s Your Job

You’re not really a writer unless people are reading your shit.” – Pearl Madison, The United States Of Leland

Despite the embarrassment that sometimes plagues us when we tell people we are a writer, and the occasional sniggers or blank nods that follow, writing has to be a job. You have to take your writing seriously if you want to succeed. You have to treat it like work, even if you already have a ‘day’ job.

Sharing your work is a job requirement if you want to call yourself a writer. It’s part of the process that leads to publication, acknowledgement and renown. You wouldn’t skimp on important tasks at your other jobs, so don’t hold out on this one.

Ultimately there are few negatives to sharing your work. You will gain exposure, learn new techniques, find inspiration, make friends and contacts, raise your self-esteem all while undertaking a worthy pursuit called writing.

Via: https://writersedit.com/fiction-writing/5-compelling-reasons-share-writing/amp/

How To Keep Writing In Tough Times

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If you’ve found yourself in the midst of a difficult season, what can you do to keep moving forward with your writing? Here are 3 ways to keep writing through adversity:

1. Think About Your Priorities

Consider what exactly is going on in your life and understand the time demands that come from it. Maybe you’re getting married and the planning is time consuming… but you’ve got this novel you just don’t want to let go of for a few months. Getting married is quite different than being stuck in a hospital for the better part of five months, and your time restrictions are going to be different. Whatever your tough situation, think about what you want to achieve. Maybe you can only spare ten minutes a day to write a few paragraphs. But hey, it’s a start!

2. Outline Your Goals

This is where you look at where you want to take your writing career, and realistically try to figure out how to keep writing and stay on track. Do you want an agent, a publishing deal, etc. Because all of that is going to require a time commitment. Working on your goals, and figure out how those work alongside the other needs and commitments you have in your life.

3. Always Be Doing Something – Even if It’s Not Writing

There are loads of positive things you can be doing to keep your head in the game. Read, listen to podcasts, or check out blog posts from other writers – to name but a few.

There are a lot of great writing podcasts out there:

When adversity strikes, you don’t have to let your writing fall by the wayside. But it will if you let it. However, you can not only continue on with your goals in the face of harrowing times, you can amaze others with your work ethic. The tenacity to push through is something almost everyone will admire. It’s also a really good feeling as a writer.

If you can get through adverse times and figure out how to keep writing, you’ll find it that much easier to carve out time on days when you’re not in the middle of a trial.

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Read the full article here: https://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/how-to-keep-writing/