So you love words.
I do too, as every writer should. Writing, at least all good writing, is and should be, a labour of love. That is the difference between making the reader read and enjoy, and making the reader laugh and cry with you. That’s what I have always wanted to do with my poetry…make the reader feel. But, am I succeeding in this? That’s for the readers to say.
There are as many ways of writing, as there are writers. This is an art. There’s nothing right or wrong here, only what works for you and what doesn’t. We all have our own writing rituals. What are yours? Do you like to write in the day, or are you a night owl? Do you write all at once, without thinking deliberately, letting the muse take over, or do you meticulously plot each sentence?
As for me, I am a very erratic writer. I know… Writing Rule #1 Write Every Day.
Now you must be wondering why am I talking at cross purposes. Actually, I am not. I fully agree with the merit of this, and a lot many other writing rules that you would find in other books and articles, both online and offline. As a writer, you must know all the rules. And not just know, you must also try out each one. Of course, you will find some of them making a huge difference to your writing, and some not. Still, know them all, and then dare to break them.
If you need some help with the rules, here is an excellent post about What Makes A Great Writer from Leonard Tillerman
I’m sure someone is going to come at me with a broom and beat me up about all the nonsense that I am talking. But that’s the whole point! What I want to say is, dare to be different, not just for the sake of being different, but for the sake of being true to your soul. Write, to give voice to your truth, not just to create a story. Don’t create characters, become them. Don’t aim to make the readers sympathise with your characters and their story. Force them, even against their will at times, to live their lives. And that can be done, only if the writing comes from deep within you.
Let me tell you this- there is no greater pleasure for me than when someone writes back to say they could feel my poem as if it was about them, that my words were just what they needed at that moment. That is when I feel like I am on the right path. If my words can become the voice of another heart, I count it as a success story.
What works best for me is to flow with the feelings, when they come. I rarely enter any competitions. I almost never write on prompts. The reason: I have made a pact with myself to write only when I cannot “not write“. I agree with Robert Frost here, when he says “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader…” You’ve got to give it your all. You’ve got to bleed to make the reader cry. And that reminds me of another of my favourite quotes, but you will have to read it on my Home Page.
I am also a morning writer. I love the dawns and the peace and quiet it brings. I love the stillness that is not quite still, that is teeming with the hope of a new birth, that of the day in the making. In fact, my entire book “You Make Me Spill My Ink” has been written in the moments of pre-dawn. Now, you might be a night person, so stay up when the world falls asleep, and let your muse work its magic. Or, you might be stimulated by the sounds of nature, or perhaps, even the bustling city sounds…well, to each his own. Do what you must, to get the creative juices flowing.
That was all about the easy part. Easy!! Yes, easy. Now the difficult part…
You’ve got your awesome content written, but that is going to get lost in the sea of words. To rise above the competition, you need to polish your writing. Edit, edit, and edit again. Be ruthless. Don’t be tempted to write every little thing. Leave something for the imagination of the reader. The reader is an intelligent creative person in his or her own right. He is not a fool. Suggest, and he will not just follow, but be there ahead of you. Make sure your grammar is perfect, and your poem or story or novel, or whatever else you are writing, is free of typos. Don’t make them mentally put red circles all over your story.
Need some help with editing? Check out this Pro Writing Aid here. This has a free version as well that you can find at the end of the page.
Here is a list of tools and resources that could be very useful for writers.
You might also find this blog called Daily Writing Tips very useful.
What are your favourite writing tools? Talk about them so we can share it with the writing world. You may use the comments box below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lastly, but certainly not in any way unimportant is to read. Be a voracious reader. Read not only the known writers but the little-known ones, the indie writers, the blogs, the newspapers, books of your chosen genre, and of the others. That’s where you learn what to be and what not to be. It’s a beautiful world out there for the writers, go on, become the best, and then go beyond. The sky is not the limit!