Today I have the lovely Hillary K. Grigonis here to do a post on her top ten things a writer does not need when trying to pen a book. Her debut novel is called Kaleidoscope Me and she has very kindly sent me a copy to give away to one of you lucky readers. And for those of you who don't win, well it's your lucky day because until April 26th the Kindle version will be just £0.99 at Amazon.co.uk! So what are you waiting for? [actually, read this post first...]
Summary: Jadyn’s world twirls out of control after her mother dies in a car accident and her forgetful Great-Aunt Nadine moves in. Her dad is never home and her best friend doesn't even know half of it. Jadyn is trying to keep it all together for her little brother, Trenton. But when Aunt Nadine disappears with Trenton in the middle of a snowstorm, Jadyn may be the only one who can. -goodreads
There's a lot of things a writer needs. A good idea. An excellent editor. Constructive criticism. But there's also a lot of things that a writer does not need. Here's ten things (that I may or may not have experienced) that haven't really helped get the words on the page.
1. An average day. It's tough to write after a ho-hum day. I write best when I'm either feeling really happy or really sad. Writing emotions when you aren't feeling any, that's hard. If I need to do some writing, I'd rather have a bad day than an average one.
2. Distractions. I'm supposed to be writing, but there's so many cool things on Facebook and Pintrest right now...
3. A dreamless sleep. A good percentage of my ideas come from dreams. Strange dreams, abnormal dreams, any dream. The project I'm working on now is from a dream that was just one sentence.
4. Writer's block. Maybe it's real, maybe it's not, but it's tough to be a writer when the words aren't flowing.
5. Ideas where notebooks and pencils cannot survive. If someone invented a waterproof notebook, they might become rich. The best ideas always seem to come in the shower. Or in bed. Or anywhere that's not at a desk trying to actually write.
6. Coffee. Contrary to popular belief, not every author survives on coffee. I actually hate the stuff. I'll take my caffeine in a large, icy Pepsi, thank-you-very-much.
7. An overly harsh inner critic. Critics, in general are good, especially in the editing process. But when your worst critic is inside you saying all kinds of nasty things about every word you put onto the page before you even have a first draft, it's not helpful at all.
8. A cliché. Sometimes, there's just a phrase that explains everything perfectly—which is why it's been used a hundred million times. Notice the cliché, and then find a way to say it better. It's not as easy as it sounds.
9. A fragile confidence. There will always be bad reviews. A writer needs to be able to take negative criticism and use it to keep growing, not as an excuse to give up.
10. A forced project. Nothing is tougher than trying to write on a certain topic or genre when you're uninspired. If you don't have the inspiration for cool science fiction story, you're not going to write the next Hunger Games, sorry. Forced writing, well, it just sounds forced.
This is just my list (Coffee may be the #1 one thing on another writer's list of absolute necessities).
Readers & writers; what would you add?
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