Sunday 14 May 2023

Tips for Writers by Lynne Benton


 If this month's blog looks vaguely familiar to some of you, that's because it is.  At the moment I'm not at all well, and the thought of coming up with a new, scintillating, clever idea for a blog was just too much!  So my husband suggested I could reprint one of my earlier blogs, and after a bit of hunting I found this one.  All the tips are just as relevant today as they were when I originally wrote it, so maybe they will help some other writers:

At a recent retreat with fellow-writers, one session involved us all coming up with tips to help with our writing lives that we had found useful.  The suggestions were many and varied, so I thought I would offer them here, in case they prove useful to others.  Even if you have heard some/most of them before, it never hurts to hear them again.

1 Writing helps you through difficult times, eg a bereavement.

2 Walking is great for sorting things in your head.

3 Avoid Social Media until after you have done your work for the day!

4 Keep fan letters to remind yourself how much people enjoy your work.

5 Collect inspiring things around you.

6 Eat plenty of chocolate!

7 Don’t beat yourself up about things you can’t change.

8 Keep a work diary to show how much you have actually achieved.  (Also include non-work that is also part of your job, such as meetings with agents or other authors, school visits, tax returns etc.)

9 Fake enthusiasm, even if you don’t feel it!

10 Keep going, no matter how slowly.

11 Ask for regular meetings with your agent – makes you think and feel positive.

12 Re-read an old book of yours to remind yourself how good you are!

13 Shut the door!  Protect your working space.

14 Try to recapture the joy.

15 Separate your yearning from your ambition.

16 Learn to listen.

17 If things are going badly, tell yourself “This too will pass.”

18 Keep to a writing routine, eg write in the library at 9.30 on the dot.

19 Accept any writing-based offers.

20 List three positive things that happen each day.

21 Make a “business morning” once a week to deal with all business matters.  Don’t feel you have to reply to everyone instantly.

22 Take experience when offered.

23 Learn to accept praise!  If someone praises you and/or your work, don’t say “Oh well, it’s only…”  Just smile and say, “Thank you.”

24 Anything that helps your writing, do more of it.  Anything that doesn’t help, do less.

25 Set achievable goals.

26 Praise other people’s work – everyone needs appreciation!  Tell them how much you enjoyed their book/write a review of it on Amazon.

27 Think positive.


Latest book:  

Billy and the Queen,

available from Amazon.

While Coronations are still in the news, this is a story of the previous one in 1953.

1 comment:

Penny Dolan said...

Good to be reminded of all these suggestions. Thanks!