From Jeff Goins’ article, “Trying to Be a Good Writer is a Complete Waste of Time“:
Don’t be good, be effective
Here’s the solution: Don’t be good. Be effective. Stop trying to be a good writer, and start trying to be effective.
Why? Because “good” is subjective. It’s meaningless. “Good” is an artifact from long ago when writers needed gatekeepers to determine the value of their work. In today’s creative landscape, the goal of writing is connection. Not lukewarm approval. “Effective,” on the other hand, defines a clear relationship between you and the reader. The goal is to be heard, to communicate a clear message to a particular audience.
So, sometimes a writer has to tighten her belt, er, plot. Did I mention my unique talent for making a short story very, very long? Turns out that’s something to rein in to create a great story.
After research, thought, and analysis, I’ve tightened up the plot for Salvage’s episode 1.
For right now, the ship in episode 1 of the Salvage Project is called Brio’s Hope. Here’s a little backstory and detail on the ship from my notes.
Should an aspiring writer blog? Like so many other questions in life… It depends.
Do you want to…
Come on, you know you know some introverts or shy folks. Maybe you are even one yourself, like me.
The core of writing is a solitary pursuit, but most of us want financial return. Part of treating writing as a business is networking with other writers.
How do you go about this? What are some first steps? What options will work for you?
Many options exist. Here are a few:
There’s so much to the business of writing that goes far beyond putting words on paper (or into Microsoft Word).
Here’s few things writers tackle that may surprise you:
Hopefully these one-liners I’ve collected on the craft of writing will help you, and perhaps not just in writing.
- DON’T TAKE YOURSELF TOO SERIOUSLY
- Be true to your I.Q.
- Embrace idiosyncrasies
- Make them laugh and/or make them cry
- “…a lot of times if you’re finding that you’re having to describe things with a lot of adverbs, find a stronger verb instead” – CJ Lyons interview
- Go beyond the five senses
- Forget about being pretty
- Don’t fall into stereotypes
- “Verbs are the foot soldiers of action-based description”
Some time ago I pulled this prompt from Writer’s Digest University’s “Showing Character Emotion“. As an exercise I recently wrote a snippet in response. It resonates with me because of the beach experiences of my childhood. The snippet is in draft form; I’ll be returning at some point to polish it by convey more emotion, directly and indirectly.
“Create a character who’s favorite place is the beach. Describe her thoughts as she stands on the sand and looks out at the ocean; use specific, imaginative, and active verbs.”