So, I've had some requests to add a book completely on writing and editing tips. So here it goes :) Today I'm simply just going to stick with the basics, something that everyone should know.
1. Cut the boring parts.
Personally, I try to leave out the parts I know people are going to skip. Unless you're writing for personal reasons alone, you need to consider the attention of your audience. There's no point in publishing content that isn't useful, interesting, or both.
2. Eliminate unnecassary words.
Here's a trick. Substitute the word 'damn' for everytime you say 'very.' Get's pretty annoying, doesn't it? I used to feel that using words like 'really', 'actually', or 'extremely' made my work sound more forceful. It doesn't. They only get in the way of what you're trying to say. Cut them and never look back.
3. Write with passion.
No matter how cheesy this sounds, "You must fill your paper with the breathings of your heart." It's not too hard to realize that if you're not excited about your writing, no one else will be.
4. Paint a picture.
I don't want you to tell me that the moon is shining, instead, show me the glint of light on a piece of broken glass. Simply stating something is fine, but when you need to capture attention, using similies, metaphors, and vivid imagery to paint a picture creates a powerful emotional response.
5. Keep it simple.
Maybe it was all those late nights, struggling to fill out the mandatory 10 page papers, but many people seem to think that worthwhile writing is long and drawn out. It's more difficult (and effective) to express yourself in the simplest possible manner.
6. Do it for love.
When you're just starting out (like myself) it's hard to decide where to begin. So don't. Just start writing. A blog is a good place to start (somewhere like Wattpad). The most valuable benefit is the feedback.
7. Learn to thrive on criticism.
A simple saying is: "You have to know how to accept rejection and reject acceptance."
Writing means putting yourself at the mercy of anonymous hecklers and shameless sycophants. Learn to make the most of the insults and distrust the praise.
8. Write all the time.
Quantity produces quality. If you only write a few things, you're doomed. The way you define yourself as a writer is that you write every time you have a free minute. If you didn't behave that way, you would never do anything.
9. Write what you know... Or what you want to know.
Successful writing is all about trust and authority. It makes sense to write about your area of expertise. If you don't have an expertise, reading and writing is the best way to develop one and put it on display.
10. Be unique and unpredictable.
How you will be successful: Listen to the best advice, then do the exact opposite. Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative (meaning you do not want to be consistent). Following what works will only get you so far. Take risks, and experiment with new styles, even if it means taking criticism, Without moving forward, you'll be left behind.
So, this is my first advice column on writing :) Hope it's slightly helpful for those of you out there, and I will be updating this soon with 'Editing Tips.' I know the Watty Awards are coming up, and most of you might need some tips to help you. If you have any thing that you would like me to add in this 'book' (so call it) such as how to brainstorm, or character development, don't hesitate to leave a comment!! :D
Enjoy my lovelies, and maybe check out my book, the Hunters?
~ K.S. Kreissl <3