I see it far too often.
Aspiring writers who have big dreams of making it big – but lack consistency, heart and grit. They want all the trimmings but don’t want to work for it. Either that or they haven’t a clue where to start. So I’ve put together a starters kit for budding writers because when I first put pen to paper, it was my mentor who guided my steps. Here are 5 things you should do when starting out in the world of writing.
1. FREE WRITE DAILY
Writers, they write. They don’t dream about writing. They don’t talk about writing. They spend each minute of the day actually doing it. Don’t expect a championship ring if you never come to practice. It’s important to spend a lot of time on your craft – in different capacities. Free writing is one of many cool exercises that helps you learn how to express your feelings. It’s also a technique that helps you push past writer’s block because this type of writing is unplanned, unorganized, it’s free. There are no rules. Try writing for 10 minutes each day without stopping or editing. In addition, there are a ton of writing exercises you can find online for free. Use them.
2. STAY INSPIRED
For me, I like to switch up my writing environment from time to time. I’m fortunate – I can pretty much produce great content anywhere. Whether it be a plane, my office, coffee shop, one of my favorite restaurants, etc. My routine is not really a routine when it comes to where I write. However, some people love the idea of writing at the same coffee shop at the same time every day. Find what works for you. To generate great content, you have to make time to also have a life. Amazing writing comes from an imagination that is creative, free, bold and vivid. Allow yourself the time and space to do so. This can easily be achieved by traveling, joining meet up groups, trying something new, conquering your fears, taking a class.
3. START OR JOIN AN ACCOUNTABILITY GROUP
Easy. Meetup.com is a great platform which allows you to join or create a group of any kind. You can also shoot an email to a few friends or maybe one friend. The point is to have a circle around you who understand your goals and can be one of many motivations to help you crush ’em. In the past and current, mentors have always been my motivation of choice. I’m incredibly self-motivated by a bigger push doesn’t hurt.
4. READ… NO, READ MORE
Earl Nightingale once said, “A person who doesn’t read is no better off than a person who can’t.” Girl, you need to read – everything, but place particular focus on your genre or specialty. For example, when I was writing my novel, my literary agent used to tell me all the time to read fiction books. I know it’s hard to find time, reading will make you a better writer. If you are a playwright, read other plays. If you are a songwriter, study music sheets. You get the point.
5. START YOUR BLOG… FINALLY!
This was the one piece of advice that really gave me the confidence to succeed. I started this blog in almost 5 years ago with a mission to practice and perfect my craft. For me, if people happened to like my work, cool. But my main objective was to fulfill my dream for the long-term, develop a dope portfolio of work and get paid to do what I love. A blog is one small piece of the bigger puzzle. It let’s people know that you are, in fact, a writer. But above all else it creates a stage for you to speak. Own it!
Writing is such a fascinating industry. I have so much respect for anyone willing to pursue it. But please know that the fun is only a result of the hard work you put in. Use this guide to get you started and continue in the direction of your dreams until you conquer them.
Peace & Love,