Monday, July 08, 2019

6 Reasons Why "Just Write" is the Best Advice for Writers

I've been writing online for a number of years now and the more I read, the more I realise why "Just Write" is the best advice, especially when times get tough.

For such a simple piece of advice, it really does cover a lot of things when you think about it.

Here are 6 reasons why "Just Write" is the best advice for writers.

1. Rules of Writing can be Broken

The rules of writing are simple guidelines to follow and not principles to stick to. Many writers see that using long sentences, adverbs, and the passive voice as a weakness, others prefer to incorporate these into their compositions, which turn out great anyway.

A good example: J.K. Rowling was scolded by Stephen King for her frequent use of adverbs, look at how that turned out.

2. The Theory of Writing is Nothing Without Practice

"Practice makes perfect", another saying we all use, and to be a really good writer takes hours of editing, proofreading. Learning from the greats is all very well and good, but when it comes down to it nothing beats grit and determination, when you're trying to write that novel.

Don't get me wrong, reading is great, but practice will make you a better writer.

3. Don't Worry if Your Creative Writing Process is Weird

I do my writing at night, after I've eaten my dinner and watched the news. Habits are all part of my the process. Often you'll find yourself thinking up ideas during the day, then put them down on paper or on your PC at night.

Your creative process is irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. What really matters is that you're able to write, and do it really well.

4. Good Writing is Based on Inner Experience Rather Than Fact

If you look on Amazon books or Goodreads you'll discover the same book with different ratings, from 1 star up to 5 stars.

How is it possible for that same book to be both low and highly rated?

Writing can be really subjective, this is due to the individual readers preference, and how they see your work. To put it simply, you can't please everyone all of the time.

Try looking at it from a slightly different perspective, write for the people who'll benefit most.

5. All Great Writers Were Lousy Once

Okay so you're thinking "What if I write something and it's terrible?" my answer would be "You can always improve on something terrible".

The point is you need to start somewhere, and a draft is just the beginning, you can polish it later.

Some things need to be sharpened or polished a little longer.

6. Putting Pen to Paper is the Hardest Part of Writing

Starting is always the hardest part.

The human brain does strange things when something mammoth sized comes along. Your brain starts visualising all of the things that can go wrong, then pretends to be productive by wasting time, using futile tasks like texting and answering emails.

By putting all of that to one side, once you start writing you'll feel like you can't stop.

I'd love to hear your thoughts about writing advice you've received in the past, or recently, in the comments below.
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  1. When I got my first lap top, I thought I'd be writing like crazy all the time. Then social media happened. So now, it's all about putting the distractions to one side and getting stuff done.

    Once you're IN the zone, it's all good. It's GETTING there that's the tough part.

  2. It's all about starting and staying on course even if it's only 1000 words a day.

    I wrote my first novel by telling myself to "just write everyday".

    Great write up Helen.

    1. Thank you for your comment Nirja. You make a really great point, it is all about 'staying the course'.


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