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What is some of the best Writing Advice you have Received? (1 Viewer)

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Theglasshouse

WF Veterans
After reading the Greenshields's thread titled: what was the worst advice you have ever received. I wanted to start this one.

Best writing advice you have ever received? Show don't tell.

I think when I without noticing tend to write narrative summaries. I now realize I have made a mistake in how I can retell the story. I now feel tempted to erase it and I write a scene based on the narrative summary if it is too short and if it is intriguing. I erase it and restart a new scene. I am rewriting a narrative summary as the hook in this case to the beginning of a short story that might be under 2000 words.

Write anything so you can have something to work with rather than nothing. Save the draft. Return days later if you still hate the idea or the story. Something is bound to work if you include show and tell in the new draft (first draft). Drafts later I write a new theme or a new piece of plot to the story.

Stay away from your work for as many days as you can so you can spot the mistakes such as grammar. I stayed away from my work a week I think. Now I was able to spot some new issues with my draft.

Write multiple drafts and number these as new word documents.

Write the 5 wh questions to anything that needs explaining in the story if it lacks context.

Write what if? Then write what would happen if this happened? One example inside a book was what if animals could talk? What would happen?

Sit down and type away. (this is so you can have something to work with)
 
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vranger

Staff member
Supervisor
Think.

Specifically from Isaac Asimov asked how he comes up with great stories: "I think and I think and I think".

I'm not being flip. I'll get stuck on where to take the story next, and I remind myself to stop staring at the screen and go off and think. Before long I get something and carry on. Remembering to do that comes straight from reading that Asimov quote. It's so basic, yet I would spend time "waiting for inspiration", rather than thinking and making it happen.
 

Taylor

Staff member
Global Moderator
After spending months researching my novel and various theories on how to write a novel, I had accumulated a three ring binder full of development. I had plot, character, theme, conflict, obstacles, requirements, resolution, timeframes, historical references...you name it!

I went out for lunch with a friend of mine who is a published novelist. I proudly showed her my binder. She pointed her finger at me and said, "Write chapter one."
 

EternalGreen

Senior Member
After spending months researching my novel and various theories on how to write a novel, I had accumulated a three ring binder full of development. I had plot, character, theme, conflict, obstacles, requirements, resolution, timeframes, historical references...you name it!

I went out for lunch with a friend of mine who is a published novelist. I proudly showed her my binder. She pointed her finger at me and said, "Write chapter one."

Better advice has never been given.

It shocks me how little "material" is actually needed to write good stories.
 

TheMightyAz

Mentor
Here's some advice from me:

If there's a question you want to ask, ask it. Don't worry about whether it makes you look shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid, just ask it. If you don't, you'll hold onto that blind spot forever. And don't think you're the only person who wants to ask the question. Other people will be too. It's just that they fear looking shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid and dare not ask.

Don't be that person: ASK
 

BrandonTheWriter

Senior Member
Here's some advice from me:
forever. And don't think you're the only person asking the question. Other people will be too. It's just that they fear looking shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid and dare not ask.
If there's a question you want to ask, ask it. Don't worry about whether it makes you look shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid, just ask it. If you don't, you'll hold onto that blind spot

Don't be that person: ASK

I like this advice.

There's no such thing as a stupid question.

tenor.gif
 

Bloggsworth

WF Veterans
Here's some advice from me:

If there's a question you want to ask, ask it. Don't worry about whether it makes you look shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid, just ask it. If you don't, you'll hold onto that blind spot forever. And don't think you're the only person who wants to ask the question. Other people will be too. It's just that they fear looking shallow, uneducated, naive or stupid and dare not ask.

Don't be that person: ASK


Good advice. If I don't know a word, I look it up - Strangely, some people are reluctant to do so, instead accusing the user of elitism. Reminds me of a time I wrote a letter to a client at work, my boss read it and suggested I rewrite it as it contained 4 five syllable words that he doubted the client would understand...
 

vranger

Staff member
Supervisor
I like this advice.

There's no such thing as a stupid question.

Many years ago ESPN had a commercial where Chris Berman was acting as a teacher in a class. One of the other broadcasters said, "Can I ask a stupid question?"

Chris's line in reply was: "There are no stupid questions, only stupid people who ask questions."
 
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