Monthly Archives: February 2015

How to Write Better in 2015

Write
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Writing, as we all know dear friends, can, on occasion, produce an explosive, passionate outpouring of meaningful words that takes the reader’s breath away. Other times it produces the kind of drivel that fills books like 50 Shades of Gravy and earns you a pay cheque of several millions and the derision of your indie writing peers who all wished they had written it first.

In truth, it’s rare that any of us write a perfect piece of prose first time. At best that work will need a little tweak here and there, at worst a complete rejig or whatever the digital equivalent of screwing up a piece of paper and sending it across the room in a fit of pique is. If you’ve ever written something whilst half-cut on red wine then you’ll know what disappointments generally await come the morning when you do a read through in the sober light of day.

The trouble with writing is that most of us have a day job. That means about 8 hours a day for five days a week is taken away from our valuable writing time. If you have a family there may be meals to cook, driving to be done for Tommy’s new tennis obsession, floors to be cleaned, parties to attend, bondage and kinky sex scenarios to work out before the weekend, all of which steal time away from your dream career as the next JK Rowling.

Finding time to sit down and write is pretty hard under these circumstances and even those brief stolen moments working on your next manuscript can be fraught with interruptions that scupper your efforts to work productively.

You may in contrast have too much time to write. In fact, you might have so much time that you often waste it. I’ll do it a bit later. I’ll do it tomorrow. I’ll get on with it next week! The opportunities for procrastination are everywhere and, if you’re not careful, another year will have gone by without you producing anything much of substance.

So if you want to make 2015 your best year for writing, then here are the Feckless top tips to help you do just that.

Write.

Oh, did I mention? Write.

Oh? Are you watching EastEnders? Write.

Found a lump on your testicle that could just be a bit of old chewing gum but may be something more sinister? Write.

The time honored guide to writing – to write, you have to write – is about as useful as a gaggle of professors riding to apocalyptic oblivion on a poop filled kite. Apparently you have to write about a zillion words before you become ‘competent’ which is a highly apocryphal mantra that some poor wastrel, who never got published, wrote and everyone thought was pretty neat.

And copied. And copied.

Until it became truth.

In the last year I’ve written around 750,000 words, which equates to roughly three books and I still haven’t got a novel to speak of. In my defence, this has been done freelancing for blog sites as eclectic as how to keep your photocopier clear of jams, where to buy the best solar panels and how to cure your anal itching without putting a fecking gun to your head.

I’ve done my time, where’s my GODDAMN book…

Takes deep breath, scratches ball (yes, singular), and carries on drinking wine…

The truth is…YES THE TRUTH IS…that to write something that is successful you have to have something to write. You need a story. And you have to be writing it for a reason.

Your guide to writing success this year?

STOP WRITING IF YOU HAVE NOTHING TO SAY.

And let’s face it, most of us don’t…

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