As his face changes, her fate unfolds. The Mirrors of Fate: Out of the Past (Book 1 to The Mirrors of Fate Trilogy). Click on the pic for e-outlets.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Small Tips that Help in a Big Way

I always pass on good advice.  It's the only thing to do with it.  It is never any use to oneself.  ~Oscar Wilde, An Ideal Husband, 1895


The writing process can be arduous and frustrating, but it can also be fun and relaxing if you allow it to be. Here are some small helpful tips that might help in a big way once you pick up your pen or start typing your next novel on that keyboard. They're reminders that help me out in a big way. Here are some quick do's and dont's.

- DON'T get bogged down by the speed at which others write. You've heard writers boast they've written Lord of the Rings length novels in 6 weeks. You've heard others say the only way to write an effective novel is by going slow, perhaps taking months or years.  

-DO figure out what speed works for you. Everyone is different and every book and every story has different needs. Just because someone got through writing a chapter in one day doesn't mean your 1000 words or 500 words a day isn't significant. When you're inspired to write, then write. The more time you spend worrying about someone else's progress is the less time you'll have to make your own. And remember, some of you out there are mommies or fathers or have other time-consuming professions. You have to determine what works for your individual situation, even if someone else seems to making "better progress".

- If you're a fast writer, DON'T make any apologies for it. Some people just have a natural ability to get their thoughts out quicker and require less editing. But DO take time out though to ensure that you're still fast but effective, not zipping through your outline or sacrificing the quality of your work to just "get that book on the market as fast as possible". Yes, you want to see your name coming up several times on Amazon, Smashwords and the like. But rushing writing a book is like rushing baking a pie. It's still edible, but do you really want to dig in once you slice that sucker open and see the inside? Probably not.

 -Feel like your novel pace is too slow? Too haphazardly fast? If you're concerned about the pace of your novel, DON'T get discouraged and throw in the towel. I've seen people do that and have even been tempted myself a few times. DO visit this link entitled "Pacing Your Story" which offers some good helpful advice about how to manipulate the pace of your novel.

-As a writer, you might know what it's like to get repetitive sometimes. But that might not be your problem. You may not even realize you've used the word "tall" four times in the last six pages. But how do you catch this quickly without having to spend endless hours combing through your manuscript for repetition? DO get yourself a handy copy of Microsoft Word, like Microsoft Professional 2010 that brightly highlights for you in a nifty navigation box to the left of your screen how many times you used in your manuscript whichever search word you specify. Just a quick hit of "Find" and putting in your word will do the trick and open up the navigation box to search through the results. Unlike some other versions of Word, you can then individually click on each instance of the repeated word used and then determine from there how you want to change that sucker and make it more original.

Hope those tips helped guys! But I know there are more nifty small tips I've missed that you writers use all the time. Let me know by dropping a comment below! :-)

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