I attended my first professional conference this weekend. The Ontario Writers’ Conference was packed with great speakers, interesting workshops and fabulous people. I was surprised by the number of unpublished authors I met. I’ve told you before in Things I Wish I Had Known Before I Self-published Social Media and Moral Support how important it is for an unpublished writer to attend these events. By the way, there will be a third installment of Things I Wish I Had Known Before I Self-published later this week.
What I want to share with you today are 8 tips I learned from entertaining author and Keynote Speaker Andrew Pyper.
- Quit stuff. If something in your writing isn’t working, move on!
- Don’t wait for inspiration. I don’t know about you, but inspiration always comes to me at the wrong time. I’ll be driving to work or about to fall asleep or playing with my daughter. If I waited for inspiration as I sat at my computer, I would never write anything.
- Treat writing as a job. I spend my mornings with my daughter, my afternoons at work, and my nights writing. Every night, I get home from work and work at least until 2 AM. Writing used to be my dream, now it’s my vocation.
- Don’t make your office comfortable. Work is not a place for relaxation. Make your work space efficient.
- Just write. There is no solution to writer’s block. Use a notebook to record the world around you, then use the notes as a springboard.
- Make something happen in your story to relieve yourself of your own boredom with it. Throw unexpected events at your characters. If you’re bored, your readers will be too. Shake things up.
- Get unstuck by writing an outline of your story. You can use an outline to figure out where your story is at, how your characters will get from point A to point B and for inspiration. I really liked this last one. You may not feel like continuing the story where you left off, but you may feel like writing about another part of it. Why not?
- Start. When you don’t know where to start, start with a conversation between two characters. One exercise is to name a character, name a second character, establish the relationship between the two characters, give one character life changing news, and write a couple of pages. It sounds like a great way to get your creativity flowing.