What not to do and what to do.A Lesson by -Insertnamehere-
Please people, be smart when you write. The biggest thing that annoys me is when someone uses improper grammar or can't spell something correctly. Keep a dictionary by your side, ask a parent or a friend, look it up on Google or something. Just don't post something that you haven't edited or re-read at least twice. Also, if you're a writer, don't talk like a texter. Don't substitute "ur" for your, "u" for you, "r" for are, etc. I don't want to talk to you or read your writing if you've done that. It's unappetizing. Not to mention you won't have much luck with editors if you submit such a piece.
Don't write starting from nothing. I actually hate saying that because I do it a lot. I like starting from nothing, because I can create a piece as I go. But it's unprofessional and usually the whole story falls apart before you even get to a conflict or to the climax. It's not smart, and it's unstable. Your information never fits together (unless you are a crazy talented writer who can actually do that). Don't start something without a solid understanding of what it is. Unless however it's poetry, but that's a different story.
Don't plagiarize. That's already a given though. It's stupid. You're not a writer if you plagiarize. You're stupid and you're disgraceful to the writing community. Write something of your own, and if you hear a line or an idea from someone, ask them for their permission to use it. Then, give them credit. I try extremely hard not to do that, no matter how amazing the line is. It challenges me. You should come up with something even better.
You don't ever want to have too much dialogue or too much explanatory paragraphs. Too much dialogue takes the reader away. I like dialogue, I do. But not three pages straight without a thinking paragraph. I want some imagery, some scenery, etc. And don't explain everything all at once. It's too much for a reader to take in, and then they end up forgetting it through out the story. Insert the information in certain areas where it connects to what you're talking about. Smooth it out along the story line. Don't be afraid to repeat things, as long as they're not too close together. Just don't repeat it word for word. Do an action, or a thinking remark from a character, that reminds the reader of that piece of information.
Back to grammar. There, their, they're. Please, for goodness sake, learn the differences between them. I come across these mistakes in writing all the time. It gets rather old, and very annoying. It's not that hard.
There's a quote from Nora Roberts who is a best-selling author, and she said: "You don't find time to write. You make time." This is very true. Don't keep coming up with excuses as to why you aren't working on your novel right now. Perhaps you aren't in the mood, or you're stuck, or you can't work on it until late and that's when you just want to go to bed. Well, get in the mood, get past your writers block, and for goodness sake, drink a cup of coffee. Always spend time on your novel, every day. If you can't do that, at least a couple times a week. I'm not telling you that you need to write pages upon pages. Just a sentence or a paragraph is great. As long as you don't let yourself forget your novel, or the reason you began writing it in the first place. Make time to write, always.
Take away distractions, if you will. Phones, especially. I know it's hard when you're already on your computer not to check your facebook or youtube (which I do all the time, especially during homework), but find a little self-control. Once you open that fresh new word document page, the world is yours. Stick with it, don't get distracted and veer off the path.
ALWAYS, write on a word document that auto saves every minute. I love to write in these little Text boxes on Writers Cafe. I don't know why, I just like it better than a word document. But I have gone through enough mishaps where I accidentally press the back button and poof, all of my writing has just disappeared and I can't get it out. Several times the power has gone out while I'm writing in one of these nice text boxes, and my writing wasn't saved. To me that is one of the worst possible things that could ever happen.
Explain everything as much as you can. Never leave something unexplained. I hate it when I'm reading a story and a character does something completely out of its norm, and you're left going, "Um, I'm sorry what?" And then the writer never cares to explain why they chose to do that, or how that even helped the situation. It's kind of like Lost. They never explained the Polar Bear.
I will get more in-depth into characters in my next lesson, but do not ever start writing anything unless you have characters. First person, second person, third person, whatever, don't start writing unless you have a very well known character.
Never give up. I promised to myself from day one, that even if my writing was horrible and nobody wanted to publish it and everyone said it was bad, that I would keep writing. Why? I write because it makes me happy. I write because I want to entertain and I want to change someone's world with my story. Even if no one wants to read it, it still changed my world. Writing has forever changed and sculpted me. I hate, bad writers. I'm going to be honest with you. I hate reading their stuff, and I hate commenting on it because I just have too many words to say. In fact, I would probably write all of these lessons in one of their comment boxes. But who cares what I think? I'm just one opinion. If it makes you happy, don't give up. There is always room to grow.
I'm probably going to come up with another thing as I write other lessons, because that always happens to me. If I do, I will come back and edit this, or just tell you in upcoming lessons what I remembered.
Added on July 18, 2010
Last Updated on July 18, 2010
AboutThe name is Oleksander Silas. 18. Male. I reside in Victoria. I write but I also write through instruments. Explosions in the Sky. Sigur Ros. Jonsi. William Fitzsimmons. This Will Destroy You. God ..