Wednesday, July 5, 2017

One Valuable Writing Lesson #IWSG

When I first started writing, I just wrote. I had no clue what I was doing, but that didn't hold me back. It was enough for me that I read a lot of fiction and from that reading I knew what worked and what didn't. Later down the track I decided to get serious about my writing, so I read copious amounts of books on writing, how-to articles, I went to conventions and listened to advice on panels, and I attended workshops. That's when I realised I had no clue what I was doing, and that did hold me back.

Eventually I got past the crippling notion that I can't do this, I can't do that, my writing is horrible and no one will like it. That was right about the time when I told myself, "You know what? Writing is a creative process. Rules don't need to rule. I have the freedom to experiment, to write what I like, to try new things and get creative. If it doesn't work, then try again."

It's important to learn what works and why, but that doesn't mean crippling yourself with doubts. Just write!! Then fix it. Or throw it away and write again. But don't give up because someone else said, "No!" And that's the most valuable lesson I learned since I started writing.


Every first Wednesday of the month the members of the IWSG post on their blogs about their writing insecurities or offer some encouragement to others. If you are new to the IWSG, then please go HERE to find out more and join up.






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Cover Reveal:
 JALAPENO CUPCAKE WENCH
AMAZING GRACIE TRILOGY, BOOK 1
A hot and spicy taste of murder—and more.

During the day, law enforcement consultant Gracie Hofner is on assignment at a small San Antonio bakery, waiting for a delivery. No one knows what it is or when it will arrive. The upside? Working next to Donovan Beck, a flirty hunk and a half—perfect fling material.

At night, Gracie resumes her search for a little girl and her mother who went missing following a double murder. Finding the pair is imperative or the girl will become a target.

At the girl’s aunt’s house, Gracie experiences a peculiar need to leave immediately. She tries to deny the urge to flee and pushes the pressure aside, but the compulsion intensifies. Gracie thinks she must have a brain tumor. Or is losing her mind. When similar events continue to occur, Gracie sees a pattern. Can she use this newfound ability to help her find the girl and her mother before it’s too late?

Where to connect with Carol:
Blog - Website - Facebook - Twitter - Amazon
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A reminder about our IWSG Twitter Pitch Party!

Hashtag #IWSGPit

July 27, 2017, 8:00 am to 8:00 pm Eastern Time




Cling to God: A Daily Devotional
by Lynda R Young

Published by Freedom Fox Press

Cling to God in the chaos of life…

A book of short devotionals for every day of the year to encourage you in your faith, to help you think about your beliefs and learn more about God. Perfect for people with busy lifestyles.

73 comments:

  1. That moment when you realize you have no idea what you're doing... Know it well!
    Carol's cover and title are awesome.
    Three weeks to #IWSGPit!

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  2. I had that moment last year during PitchWars. Reading all the tweets, clicking through to all the how-to articles, I was like, I'm doing that wrong, I'm doing that wrong too. Oh, what do you know, I'm doing that wrong too.

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    1. And that feeling will pop up on occasion even when you thought you'd worked through it.

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  3. Great lesson Lynda! I think those of us who hope to get published may spend a lot of time focusing on the end product that we lose sight on simply enjoying the process (yes, I'm guilty). Writing can be subjective, so we might as well enjoy ourselves. :)

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    1. The enjoyment of the process is paramount

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  4. but we do wish the likes of those who wrote Twilight and Fifty Sheds of Gray did cripple themselves with doubt

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    1. Ah, Dezzy, you never cease to make me laugh.

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  5. We all have that moment when we realise we have no idea what we're doing... I like to wave at it, raise a glass in salutation and write the way I think is right. I got stuck in a vortex of self-doubt for a while - much like Raimey's comment above - until I realised that writing is subjective and sometimes you have to do what feels right.
    "Just write!! Then fix it." Excellent advice :-)

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    1. And then find your audience because not everyone will like what you've written, but there will always be those who do.

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  6. We sometimes learn so much that we forget to enjoy the process.

    Beautiful shot of the hawk.

    We are still enjoying your devotional every single night.

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    1. Hearing that you are still enjoying my devotional really heartens me.

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  7. Oh yes, it is so important to just write. In fact, I would say just read and write and put a fence around yourself to block out the doubters.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G Everything Must Change

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    1. And actively seek out your supporters.

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  8. wonderful advice here, Lynda. Thank you.

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  9. Great advice, Lynda. I'm like you in that I didn't have a clue what I was doing when I started writing.

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  10. Once we know the rules, we can bend them. :)

    Love the title of Carol's book!

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  11. Yep, I sure had no clue, still not saying I do lol but onward I go.

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  12. Hi Lynda - like you ... a surprising ease in - but was surprised I could write ... good luck - cheers Hilary

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  13. And there are so many people out there who are going to tell you NO. But they're are others who are GOLD, and give you a YES. It feels like nothing else in the world.

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    1. The golden ones are the ones we should surround ourselves with.

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  14. I was like you when I started writing fiction. When I looked at how-to books, much of what I read went over my head. A few years later, I went back to those books. I was like 'so that's what they meant.' Writing is an ongoing process.

    Thank you for sharing my cover. Happy July!

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    1. I don't think we ever stop learning and relearning.

      You are most welcome!

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  15. Awesome valuable lesson here--I couldn't agree more. Learning about the craft is important, but it can make you feel hopeless at the same time. Everyone has to follow their own path in the end.

    Carol's book sounds super interesting.

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    1. It's funny how the lessons in writing can be applied to the lessons in life.

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  16. Quitting is for quitters. You don't strike me as a quitter. Exvellent lesson. Couldn't agree more.

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    1. This is not to say I don't occasionally toy with the thought of quitting. But I have some chocolate and I'm good to go again.

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  17. I love this lesson and will keep as my own. Hope you don't mind sharing. hehehe

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  18. This lesson echoes my own! Especially now, as I'm working my way through a Masters in Creative Writing. Yes, I feel rubbish. But I keep going. :)

    Shah X
    http://shahwharton.com

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  19. My early career went pretty much just like yours. It was humbling to learn how much I didn't know.

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  20. It's great to soak up advice but I think we should treat it as just that, not rules. It can be intimidating trying to stick to them all the time. Everyone needs to find out what works best for them.

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  21. Well put, Lynda. There is so much writing advice to soak in, but each of us still has to find our own voice and just tell our story.

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  22. Every writer is different. Rules for writing are more like suggested guidelines. Use what works for you and forget the rest. Thanks for this reminder, Lynda!

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  23. Maybe the hardest part of writing is surviving those early years of self doubt and listening to the opinions of the wrong people. Glad you made it through with a toughened skin.

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    1. Yep, there are a lot of opinions out there.

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  24. Good advice and good post, Lynda!!

    Congrats to Carol. I love her cover and the book sounds intriguing.

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  25. Hi, Lynda,

    So glad you through those rules out the window... writing is also SUBJECTIVE.... ALWAYS remember that. ANYONE can write. It's truly about the passion of the writer's words. That is what readers react to, not if it is written in perfect sentence structure. That is something I learned.

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    1. Exactly. The passion shines through. The average reader won't even notice a broken rule if the overall story works.

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  26. I was an art geek in high school and went to college for it for a little while, and I had a teacher who was against how to draw books. He said the writer is teaching you how to draw THEIR way and not YOUR way. So I have a hard time picking up books on writing, but the few I have picked up have been very helpful. I have to remind myself that writing and drawing are two different mediums so the craft of how to do each have their own techniques to learn.

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    1. I think art how-to books have their place because they can introduce to the artist a new technique. From there the artist can make it their own, or throw it out entirely. But you are right, writing and art, while both creative, are quite different in their approach.

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  27. There is so much out there to learn and so much of it conflicts with each other that it does become overwhelming. Learning to handle that is when things started coming together for me.

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    1. Ha, yes, we need to sift through a lot of conflicting information!

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  28. Way true. Rules and expectations can suck the joy right out of writing...if we let them. Carol's book has an eye-catching cover, and sounds intriguing!! Congrats to her!

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    1. "If we let them". That's the key: Not to let them.

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  29. It's definitely important to remember why we started writing in the first place. Also - great eagle pic! :)

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    1. Thanks. Birds can be quite difficult to photograph sometimes because they can move so fast.

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  30. I don't know if that Carol Kilgore book is my usual genre, but my god I love that title. :-)

    July IWSG

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  31. I don't know if that Carol Kilgore book is my usual genre, but my god I love that title. :-)

    July IWSG

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  32. I love your advise to write with creative fun too. It may never be what publishers want but writing for ourselves, for our own contentment and happiness is most important!

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    1. I think we can still write for ourselves while also having an understanding of the market. What we don't want to do is write what we think others want to read. We can't please everyone.

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  33. Sometimes it's hard to get past those notions of self-doubt; reading some of those how-to books on writing, especially the ones written by people like Stephen King, Natalie Goldberg, and Anne Lamott, encouraged me to keep writing, in spite of my doubts.

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  34. Yay for Carol!

    That paralysis stage definitely seems like one of the rites of passage in this industry. I didn't freeze, but rather became more determined in applying everything I could learn. Here's to getting through and reaching the other side!

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    1. Love that you became more determined.

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  35. I especially like what you said about not giving up just because someone else said no. When I was in college, I took a creative writing class, where the harsh feedback from my classmates on my stories (though I will admit that my stories weren't very good, especially since I was still a beginner) discouraged me enough that I stopped writing for a while. But I missed writing too much to give it up, not to mention as it turns out, one of my harshest critics in that class plagiarized her story (which was praised by everyone else in the class) from a chapter from Sandra Cisneros' novel Caramelo.

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    1. Ha, just goes to show you should listen to your own instincts. This isn't to say all critiques are bad. It's important to find a critique group you trust.

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  36. Determination and perseverance are the most important qualities in a writer.

    Damyanti

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