Wednesday, 28 October 2009
"Listen to what people talk about most whether it be positive or negative and write it in your notebook"
If you like to write articles or even need ideas of conversations to put in your story then listening out to what people talk about on a daily basis is going to help you. Day to day chit chat fills up most people's days and we spend a lot of our time doing this. But how often do we really listen to what people are talking about and use it to help our own growth. So go back to one of your first tips I gave you about getting a notebook and spend your day really listening to what people are saying and jot it down in your book. Then when you are next writing an article and need ideas of what is being talked about at the moment, your notebook is going to be a great tool. Or if you are writing a story and need some general conversation for your characters fill it up with some notes from your notebook. It will really help and it saves you time sitting there wondering what to write when it comes to chit chat, when all you need to do is listen to the world around you! Try it out today.
Monday, 26 October 2009
"Wake up an hour earlier and get some work done, it sets you up for the day"
We all wish for that extra hour in the day to get something done or some of us even wish for an extra day in the week to get those things done which you can't quite fit in during the week. So my partner has been trying out something new for the last week and it has worked really well and I thought it would be great to share with you. He has been getting up an hour earlier and getting some reading or general work done that when he gets in at night time he doesn't have time to do. He has found that it has motivated him for the day and really made him feel awake by the time he actually gets to work!
To make sure you don't really tire yourself out though, make sure you go bed maybe half hour earlier the night before. Or even if getting up earlier isn't right for you. Over the last 2 weeks I have been putting aside 30mins - 1 hour to read before I go to bed and get some ideas together for my next chapter. Once I get in from work and get everything out the way that I need to I feel relaxed and can then get deep into my reading/writing. So I suppose today's main tip is to make sure you put an hour aside a day to spend time doing what you enjoy, whether it be 1st thing in the morning or last thing at night. Let me know how it goes!
Check out my partners webpage http://calvin-t.blogspot.com/
Thursday, 8 October 2009
"DON'T let things get you down, following a passion is always worth while"
Sometimes in life we are all guilty of letting things get us down. Whether it be work related or personal. When things don't always go right and that job you have always wanted just doesn't come along, then as a human being we instinctively take offence to this and can be put off what ever we were doing. So when you are writing and writing and feel like no-one is reading then don't let it get you down, don't stop writing because there will always be someone who is reading and someone who believes in you, and that should be yourself too. You need to believe in yourself to succeed. So today's tip isn't so much about a writing technique or style to help you write, its more a mental tip to help you when sometimes you get stuck and are struggling. Never give up on a passion if you honestly enjoy doing it. Even if you don't get anywhere with it career wise, then just enjoying it as a hobby should be enough. And one day you might just get your big break if you keep persevering with it.
So I want to say a big heart felt Thank You to everyone who reads my blog!
Monday, 5 October 2009
"Conduct a short interview for practice"
So sometimes work does dry up and you sometimes don't have the drive to keep going but there is always a way you can keep your brain exercised and get some practice in for yourself, while putting something interesting on your blog for others to read. To start off with pick a friend at random, someone who is interesting and generally has something worth writing about. It could be that they are great at a certain hobby or have just started a new job, sponsored a new charity, anything. Write out some questions, keep it short, only between 8 and 10 questions and sit down with your unsuspecting candidate and take some notes! (your notebook from Tip #1 will come in handy for this exercise!) Take some details down and then go away and write it out into an interview, don't make it too long and tedious to read through because people could get bored as its an interview on somebody they don't know. But this is great practice for you and its a little bit of fun. Its great if you want to go into article writing. Look at your local newspapers and check out how many of them have small interviews, 60 second interviews even. Try it out!
Sunday, 4 October 2009
"Read your work aloud"
This may sound like quite an odd piece of advice but let me explain first before you decide. When most people write you find that you get into a flow and you keep writing and writing and you read back over it in your head and it sounds fine . Now read it aloud and you sometimes pick up on things you wouldn't if you were reading in your head. I used this example on my partner the other day (I hope he doesn't mind me mentioning it!) He had written a short piece of writing and read it over and was happy with it. He asked me to read it through it but instead I asked him to read it out loud to me. As he was reading through it he kept stopping himself and rearranging words that didn't quite sound right and by doing that he completely edited his writing himself.
I always read my work out loud to check for mistakes or to see if a sentence I have written makes sense. It also works well for me if i am writing something and get stuck, can't think of what to put next, so I read it aloud to see if anything naturally follows it or if I need to change it. 9 times out of 10 it works for me. So today's tip may be short and simple but it really is a little tip worth knowing!
Saturday, 3 October 2009
"Read as much as you can, from books to magazines to e-books"
I enjoy reading all types of books from romance novels to crime and thriller stories. I love nothing more then getting stuck in to a good read. Reading has always been something I am passionate about but it is also a great learning tool. You get to pick up on how different people write. If you are particularly interested in writing novels then it it great to read books to allow you to pick up on different writing techniques. If you are more into article reading then you can gain so much from picking up a newspaper and magazine a day and reading through different articles. Read main articles that really grab your attention and then take a look at the one's which don't stand out as much. What is different in the way they are written? You can really analyse people's work and look at it in depth, even set yourself little essay questions on them or take the main contents and try to re-write it yourself.
These are great exercises and I find myself now whenever I am reading a book, looking at the way a sentence has been formed and if I would have done it differently. As a writer you are always looking at other people's writing techniques and looking for new ways to write your own work, the work doesn't just stop when you stop writing! So teach yourself something new today. You really are capable of it and it keeps your brain fresh.
There are so many online tips and e-books that you can go through as well to help you gain different ways of writing just from reading. Go on to your favourite writer's website and look at how the articles on their website have been written. Happy reading!
Tip #7 coming soon
Thursday, 1 October 2009
"How to help you to concentrate and get the most from your writing time"
When you sit down to get on with your work, whatever kind of work it may be, it either takes a while to get into it or its hard to keep concentrating for long periods of time. Firstly when you sit down to concentrate, sit in a quiet room, don't have the TV or the radio on in the background because although you may not realise it, it will be causing a distraction from your work. When you have loads of ideas and you just want to keep writing forever its great but you need to have breaks. Write down all your ideas (so you don't forget them) and then start writing and continue for about 30 minutes. Then take a break, move away from your desk, go get a cup of tea/coffee and take a 10-15 minute break. Have a change of scenery for a short space of time and you will see the difference. When you go back to your desk you will find it a lot easier to concentrate.
Your brain can not concentrate for long periods of time, hence why when we were in school we had so many breaks. As adults we are expected to concentrate for longer, although sometimes it may be the case that we can sit there for hours writing, but the quality of the writing my differ. It will be fantastic at the beginning and as time goes on you can tell where the writer needs to put down the pen/stop typing and take a break. There is no harm in having a break, it does some good. So when you start feeling tired or a little weary, remember it is ok to take a break and that you are generally only expected to concentrate for about 30-45 minutes at a time.
Try it out and see how it works for you. Happy writing. Come back for Tip #6 tomorrow.