Monday, May 24, 2010

Writing Tips

Publication is only one of the reasons we write. We write because we are writers. We write because we love to write."
- Karen Cushman.

Here are more lovely morsels from that magical session with Newbery novelist Karen Cushman.

Karen Cushman's Tips For Writers:

1. Show Up:

Have a writing place and time. Keep showing up.

2. Pay Attention :

Read 100 books like the one you want to write.
Read what you love and ask yourself why you love it.
Read books, blogs, magazines, news.
Join a writing group.
Read your own work aloud over & over & over.

3. Tell the Truth :

Know your characters and connect with them.
Find the truth of your writing self, your view, your voice.

4. Ignore the Outcome :

Quiet your inner critic.
Write what you always wanted to read.

Write with passion, from your heart, to bring something to people.

Publication is only one of the reasons we write.
We write because we are writers.
We write because we love to write.

"I write what I can. That is my responsibility." - Flannery O'Connor

Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little." - Tom Stoppard
Along with all the rich advice, Karen urged us to go out and make our own rules.

What writerly rules do you live by?


Jan Morrison said...

how bizarre, my dear! I did my writing tips over on my blog today. weirdness abounds....

Stacy Post said...

Excellent tips! I think number one is absolutely essential. If you don't show up, it can't be done. Creating the habit of writing frees the mind to create. Thanks for sharing!

Rebecca said...

My only real writing rule is that I write what I want (what I love) and not try to follow trends.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

I really like what Flannery O'Connor said. That feels right and makes it personal. Thanks.

Faith Pray said...

Jan, I'm so glad we think alike!

Tricia, Stacy, Rebecca, it's fun to hear what resonates with each of you. Great stuff!

Richard Jesse Watson said...

I write because my muse rolls me out like clay, sticks me in an oven and bakes me until brittle. Then he dips my head in ink and writes away. Ack! He's coming, I'm supposed to be working on a deadline, gotta go...

Erin Lucas said...

beautiful! totally inspiring.

kathleen duey said...

I love Karen Cushman. Her work is wonderful and her deep, wide writer's heart is wonderful, too.


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