I came across a blog post last week that was a reblog of a reblog. My first thought was ‘that’s got to be a good article, so I skipped over to the originator’s site and had a read and discovered the post you see beneath, from author Kirsten Lamb.
For me, the magic word was ‘Newbie.’ Although I’ve been writing for several years now, I still consider myself a newbie. Partly in the sense that I have no novel yet, but also because I feel that I always want to be in a state of ‘there is more that I need to know.’ And boy, is there a lot!
Kirsten lays ot some of the mistakes that we (as newbies) are prone to make. With me, Mistake #2 is one I am currently grappling with. I’m in the process of dealing with it, but it always bears remembering. Have a read of her excellent post:
5 Newbie Mistakes that Will KILL a Perfectly Good Story
We all make mistakes, especially when learning anything new. Writing is not immune to process. Contrary to popular belief, writing great stories is HARD.
It takes time, devotion, training, mentorship, blood, sacrifice and the willingness to make a ton of mistakes. This means countless hours and probably years of practice (which also means writing a ton of crappy books/stories).
As I mentioned in the last post, George R.R. Martin didn’t become a legend because of his marketing abilities and mad HootSuite skills.
No, he’s a master because he’s practiced and honed raw talent until he could create a series that’s become a global phenomenon.
Same with J.K. Rowling, Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, and all the other ‘greats.’ They didn’t begin as legends. It took time, practice, and a fair share of ugly drafts and stories.
With practice, we learn what works, what doesn’t, what sizzles and what fizzles. We find, develop and mature our writing voice.
The problem I see these days is that, now that we’ve transitioned into the digital age and it’s so easy to self-publish, many writers are ‘ad-men’ before artists.