Keep Writing!

The intention of this post really is to get an idea of who is still writing after National Novel Writing Month has finished and to give a little advice. Have people fallen by the wayside? Are they still writing? Are they working on the same story or another one?

Santa might be coming but don’t stop writing! Source: Google Images

It is post-NaNoWriMo and I am still writing the same story and it is still throwing up surprises. I am glad it is as it makes continuing to write it a joy. Let’s face it, once the amazing energy of the month of November has gone and we get ourselves ready for Santa to come, it is very easy to stop and give up. Having a goal to work towards has helped me as I am very goal orientated I have realised in the last few years but for others, it might be something completely different. The love of the story, the characters, the world the story is set in… Any manner of things can keep us writing.

Everyone has heard the advice to write everyday and it is possibly clichéd and overused but hearing it so often can only show that maybe it is good advice to follow. If you stop, it can be difficult to start again. It is a possible reason why people struggle with New Years Resolutions. We do it for a while, stop then pick it up again. The same goes with writing and if you wrote everyday during November, why not continue to write everyday? What about starting a journal or blog of some sort? Dreams, life, books, films; you could chronicle any number of things by sitting down and writing everyday.

If you loved your story from November and didn’t finish, why not keep going with it? If you did, go you! But keep going! Keep writing! If you joined write-in’s during NaNoWriMo, why not arrange more so people can set the guilt monkeys on you? See if your region has regular ones through the year.

In January and February, the NaNoWriMo website will be updated to give editing hints and tips and to get you going. Editing and rewriting is, perhaps, the toughest part of writing any type of story, from the short story to the novelling epics. Get your manuscript ready for then. Get it finished. Put it away to let it breathe. Work on something else then, in January, whilst hung over (or otherwise!), get it out and start reading through.

Just Don’t Stop Writing!

So who’s with me? Who’s writing? Or am I a lone voice shouting to no one in particular?

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Writing only looks easy. But it can be learned.

Some great words of advice here. Never throw away your old stuff. Keep everything. Maybe, in the future, you can go back to it and realise you can use or recycle some of it.

Matthew Wright

Writing isn’t something you can sit down and do without training. It only looks that way.

Spot my title in the middle... Spot my title in the middle…

I’ve noticed, of late, various posts and comments around the blog-o-sphere along the lines of ‘my book is good, because I got positive comments on Good Reads (or Amazon, or Smashwords), so why did an agent say it was terrible?’

Or ‘I got positive comments on Good Reads, but the agent said the book needed this-and-this-and-this…’

Why? There’s no soft way to say this. Fact is that neither writer nor on-line reviewer actually knew what constituted a good book – meaning not just an abstract measure of quality and authorial competence, but what’s required for a specific market.

Agents do. So do commissioning editors.

What’s happened is that the aspiring writer’s sat down and thought ‘I want to be a writer’ – usually, meaning ‘novellist’. They’ve then churned out…

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Cunning plans for pushing through the creative flat spot

I think I might do one or two of these suggestions. Might help me get through the black spot I am having at the moment.

Matthew Wright

In all the years I’ve been writing books it’s always been the same. Somewhere along the way there’s a flat spot.

1195430130203966891liftarn_Writing_My_Master_s_Words_svg_medIt’s the point where inspiration or enthusiasm wanes, but the deadline is still there and has to be met. It hits most authors, and it seems to happen irrespective of what’s being written – or its length. Right now, I figure a lot of NaNoWriMo entrants might be hitting that wall.

Remember – if it’s flat for you to write, it’ll probably also be flat for your readers to read. Is there a way around it? Sure is. In fact, if there wasn’t, books wouldn’t be finished. I’ve got a few strategies for dealing with it.

1. If time permits, stick the book in a drawer and write something else for a few days or weeks. For me, anyway, there’s usually more than one thing on the go.  A change is as…

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Nine Writing Lessons You Can Learn From Cats

Some good advice from our feline friends.

Writers Write, Right?

1. Every realistic character needs a dark side.


2. It’s often the tiny things that make great stories.


3. Characters have to fail, or else it isn’t interesting.


4. Sometimes, it’s best to summarize.


5. Every author, even the best of them, will get told “no” at some point in their career.

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6. Small things in the story can have big impacts.


7. Even the worst villains have a personality beneath all that evil.


8. Proper research makes a story feel more realistic.


9. Mustaches make every novel better.

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World Building: Cultures

Some good points to consider if you are doing any type of world building.

Writer Block

     By culture I am referring to the distinct ways that a group lives their lives instead of the group’s symbols and creative aspects. Know the differences between the cultures in your world allows for both diversity and potential conflict. Knowing the specifics of a particular character’s cuture does the same – as well as helps you bring that character to unique life.

      As a reminder, culture traits are generalities – they are shared by most people in the culture but are shared to different degrees. There is still room for variation within a group even when they share language and dialect, aesthetics, gender expectations, social structure, and religious practices. Whether you are trying to understand your character’s surface culture or are trying to create new cultures, these are all key elements to examine. And of course a person can belong to multiple cultures and subcultures.

  • Dialect: Writers…

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