Posted in Writing

10 Things I Learned About Writing This Year

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1. Rejections do get a little easier. After a few form rejections, they become a little less personal. And when you do get a rejection with a suggestion for improvement, it’s quite encouraging. Of course, some rejections are still painful, especially when it’s been with the editor for almost three months or it’s a form rejections on a requested manuscript. But it helps to think of each “no” as one step closer to “yes.”

2. Some days the words flow like magic. Other days it feels like writing my own name is an effort.

3. The best ideas come in the shower, the car, or in bed in the middle of the night. If they’re really good ideas, they’ll come back when you can actually sit down at the computer.

4. There are only two unbreakable rules for writers. Read a lot. Write a lot. (thanks Stephen King). Everything else is worth a try. Fast drafting, detailed outlining, color-coded sticky notes, writing the synopsis first, plot beats, hero’s journey, etc. All these are great places to start, but feel free to toss anything that doesn’t work.

5. No matter how many times you go through a manuscript, your editor will find face-slapping errors. Some are comical, some embarrassing, but most are fixable.

6. Some things get easier, some are harder. Sometimes I long for the days when I didn’t catch myself mid-draft thinking about GMC, POV or scene vs. sequel. But then when I get stuck, I know what to look for.

7. No one really knows the secret to making a book a bestseller. Sure, there are things an author can do to help themselves, but there is no magic formula for making a sure-fire-instant-through-the-stratosphere-mega success. Believe me, I’ve looked.

8. It gets easier to talk about my book, both to friends and strangers alike. And the answer to “Oh, is it like 50 Shades?” is always, “I hope it sells like it.” 🙂

9. The romance writing community is incredibly supportive and helpful. I’ve learned so much from other authors and I haven’t met one yet, in person or online, who hasn’t been willing to offer advice on everything from how to get past writer’s block to how to get your Facebook and your Twitter feeds to connect.

10. No matter how supportive your family is, they will get frustrated with the amount of time you spend writing, updating your blog, connecting on social media, researching and just staring off into space trying to figure out how to get your characters to move forward. They still want dinner, clean socks and to spend time with you.

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Author:

Author of Contemporary Romance. Wife. Mother. Educator. Sports fan. And I once trained to be a model, but I don't look like one. Most days I don't even wear makeup.

6 thoughts on “10 Things I Learned About Writing This Year

  1. Good lessons! I particularly agree with number 10. To everyone other than yourself, it just looks like you’re spending a lot of time messing around on the internet, and it’s hard to get people to understand that you really are working. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I still remember the first RWA meeting I went to. Everyone was very nice but they kept asking me about what I write. I felt like I was in the wrong class. But I went back and started learning how to talk about my book to other writers and eventually how to pitch to editors.

      I still struggle with writing the loglines, but once I do get it down, it’s easier to sum up the story in conversations.

      Like

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