Finding your writing tribe!

Its two days until the Romance Writers Australia (RWA) annual conference, can you tell I am excited???

Spoiler alert: I am!

Last year I attended my first RWA conference, and it was an eye opener. It was full of fantastic craft workshops, great networking events and more importantly, I found my tribe.

I have read countless articles about the importance of finding your tribe, and like many other people, I paid it off. I am at heart an introvert, the last thing I ever want to do is mingle with strangers, but I can honestly say that it was worth it. A writer’s conference is probably the only type of event, where introverts surround you and everyone wants to discuss their favourite books or what they are writing.

If you haven’t worked up the courage yet to attend one, even for a day. Be brave. Take the plunge.  It’s worth it!

Writing Goals!

Writing Accountability post copy

This blog is quickly morphing into a come join me on my crazy journey as an aspiring author. I think I should do an accountability post. I am slowly realising that I need to tell someone (even if it is on the blogosphere) my writing goals.

Finishing off for the year at work. Family coming from interstate. Uni essay. Holidays. I know I should be grateful for all of the above (maybe not the uni essay) but finding the time to fit in writing is getting harder and harder. I am finding I have to be more disciplined.

I am adding writing to my daily to do list. And yes, I now have a to do list. #ADULTING

So I am pledging to write 5000 words in December. 

This may not look like a lot of words but it means I will be writing almost every day – I don’t plan on doing what I normally do for an upcoming uni assignment and wing it until the last two days – literally counting down the clock until its due as I frantically write and try to form a coherent argument, let alone have the correct referencing system. At the moment I can fit in a couple of hundred words a day -in between my other commitments, but that’s a couple hundred more than I would write if I was waiting for the perfect ‘writing’ time. I am also learning the importance of sprints and #500in30 on a good day. Sometimes the muse shows up, other times I’m still waiting but the words are getting written!

Come join me.

How many words are you pledging to write this month?

 

Writing competitions: to submit or not?

Final

I procrastinated for three and half weeks, visited Shanghai Disneyland but somehow (the gods of procrastination must have been busy or distracted) managed to still submit a synopsis to the RWA (Australia) Selling Submission competition.

I don’t think I have ever been as nervous as I was when I pressed send; ok that might be a slight exaggeration. It was right up there with sending the dubious work email to your boss/work colleague/arch nemesis, where you spend ten minutes re-reading the email and thinking about the pros and cons of sending it. Press send than realise there was a typo and you can’t recall the email back.

But the only way to move forward is to share your work and learn from the feedback you are given. So send I must.

On the bright side, I now have a roadmap for how I think my current WIP ends….or do I?

What has been your experience in entering writing competitions? The good, the bad, the ugly?

Stephen King – On Writing

Tales from the Master himself, Stephen King.

There are some books on writing that teach you more than just writing, Stephen King’s On writing is one of those. I stumbled across this book a few years ago and dutifully bought myself a copy, where it lived on my bookshelf (with a few others of its kind) just collecting dust. Last year I decided to get serious about my writing – and learn more about the craft.

The hype around the book is true, King has created a masterclass into some of his key points about writing and has given the reader an insight into his writing career. Through the highs and the lows of his life.

You sometimes forget that even King had to start somewhere – I particularly appreciated the way kept his rejections letters as a reminder.

I know there have been various posts on why this book is a must read for King fans and for writers – I will caveat this as this advice may not be suited to you. There is no right or wrong way to write- as long as you write.

The top three points that resonated with me- trust me, this was a hard pick, and to be truthful, this points work for me now. The next time I re-read this book, other points may jump out.

  1. Write with the door closed.

Give yourself time to create your world. Don’t worry about the rejections and the judgments that you are continuously imagining. That comes later. It will not be perfect, but you can’t edit a blank page.

  1. Have an ideal reader.

Not everyone will love your writing. You will have people who wont like your genre, your characterisations or your plot. It is not your job to be a people pleaser. I adored the fact the King’s ideal reader is his wife Tabby, and that she critiques his work.

3.  Write, write write, read, read, read.

Do you have a draw full of half finished manuscripts and stories? It was only when I did my recent move (with my parents urging me to take the last of my boxes) that I realised I had a handful of notebooks with half written stories a reminder of how I had spent my teenage years. It also reminded me of why I wanted to write. Daydreaming about far away worlds and kickass heroines was a big part of my childhood. And who doesn’t love losing themselves into someone else’s world.

Have you read On Writing? Do you have any takeaway points?