5 for Friday

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5 quick pieces of writing advice I’ve received from mentors, MFA teachers, and workshop instructors.

1. We are writing something terribly interesting to us, but we need to make it interesting to the reader. BE GENEROUS to your reader.

2. Always know exactly what you are writing about. You don’t have to write about all of it, but know it.

3. Write every day. Even if it’s only one sentence. Even better: write every day at the same time. It gets you into a rhythm, trains your writing muscles; your mind becomes accustom to the ritual.

4. Make your characters specific. Characters shouldn’t seem like they popped out of a movie. They shouldn’t be defined by age, background, race, etc. They should be singular. You should be able to walk into a room and pick the character out of a crowd.

5. Never write a story you don’t want to be writing. Write what excites you, what you need to write. Write what you can’t not write. Crack yourself up, make yourself cry. If you’re not moved, you reader won’t be.

 What’s the best writing advice you’ve received? Leave a comment and I’ll post the collective advice next week. Have a great weekend, everyone.

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

~Sylvia Plath