If you’re anything like me, you often seek encouragement, tips, validation and inspiration pertaining to your writing. No, we might not make our living as novelists or poets, but even us freelancers, who successfully complete tons of content writing jobs on a regular basis, deserve some enlivening words of wisdom now and again.
Show, Don’t Tell:
Anton Checkhow (Russian writer considered one the best short-story authors in history) once said:
“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.”
Wow, that is beautiful, isn’t it? How many times do we as writers get bogged down with SEO requirements and word counts, only to forget the art involved in what we do? It’s important to remember that we’re showing what’s in our mind’s eye to our readers, not simply relaying facts. (Of course, I know sometimes that’s not true and we are simply relaying facts, but go with me on it.)
Don’t Wait Until You Feel Like Writing to Produce:
There are many times when you simply don’t “feel” like writing. However, as writers, those are the days we have to push through and continue to write anyway. Jack London had this to say about writing while uninspired:
“You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”
Well, there you go.
Don’t Get Discouraged When You Mess Up:
We all have bad days or weeks of writing. Those times when it doesn’t seem like anything we produce is worth reading. Or, at least I do. However, we can’t let that get us down, we have to persevere. Author Ray Bradbury (American Science-fiction and horror novelist) once said the following about discouragement:
“Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as a writer.”
Don’t Take Criticism Too Seriously:
During those times of discouragement, like mentioned above, it can be easy to take every complaint or criticism to heart. However, to be a success, we cannot put too much stock in what others say about our ability. Neil Gaiman (successful English author) once said:
“Remember: When people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.”
This quote perfectly communicates why you cannot put too much emphasis on what others say about your abilities.
Don’t Limit Yourself:
I will occasionally back away from a topic or article that I am not sure I can handle. However, I have recently learned that taking a chance and giving it a try is a good way to grow as a writer. Ray Bradbury (already quoted above) said this about writing as much as possible:
“Quantity produces quality. If you only write a few things, you’re doomed.”
I hope you got some encouragement from these tips and interesting quotes. Remember, we can all learn and grow more as writers and we should inspire each other along the way.
Brandie P is a freelance writer who enjoys watching her daughter perform in plays and her son play soccer. She also is committed to her faith and is thankful for her wonderful husband who encourages her every time she needs an uplifting word.