My mother and many others would often say that fish was
"brain food." Still, they never quite convinced me to put aside my
aversion to the taste and smell. I'm more a spoonful-
of-sugar-helps-the-medicine-go-down type of gal.
A lot of writing advice reminds me of fish: smelly and yucky
to the palate. What are some of the things that make me cringe? Here's a
1. Real writers must sit down and write
every day. I contend there's more to developing a story than putting
words on paper. Research, turning various scenarios over in your mind, and
jotting down interesting tidbits from your day all count. Then when you
actually sit down to spill thoughts into a pristine document, something
worthwhile comes out.
2. Real writers plot out their stories.
Sorry, folks, you might as well put moi into a padded room and lock the door.
Writing is a Seat-of-the-Pants endeavor in this house. If plotting gets your
brain in gear, go for it, but we're not all wired that way.
3. Real writers are introverted, down
gallons of coffee, and own stock in Godiva. Okay, I'll give you the
Godiva. Introverted - not a chance. I thrive on interaction with people whether
in person or on Facebook. The idea of a lonely cabin and a laptop makes me
shudder. Lactaid milk and chocolate chip cookies - yeah, that will get the
4. Real writers will only read in their
genre. Boring! I realize many are horrified by these revelations, but
some of this stuff is what causes writer's block. I write Christian Speculative
Fiction, but love to read Historical Romance, Romantic Suspense, and dare I say
an Amish book or two. Oh, don't forget non-fiction has its benefits. Of course,
I love futuristic novels, but what happened to being well-rounded?
5. Real writers will make consuming how-to
books their top priority. Don't get me wrong, but I believe in
selective consumption of these tomes. Most of them are slanted toward plotters.
I've got my favorite craft books, and they've helped me improve. My best craft
book: God's Word. Getting closer to the One who is THE Creator and seeing how
He expresses Himself - it doesn't get any better than that.
Question for Writers: What writing advice ties your brain
into a knot?
Question for Readers: Is there a point where a writer's
efforts to help you see a scene leaves you puzzled instead of enlightened? Who
are some of your favorite authors?
Photo Credit: GlennPeb