9/19/11

Some writing tips

I can give you a million websites, that has a bunch of writing tips. All going to say the same thing in their own weird little way. But I found this is pretty good, it's from SparkLife, and I find it helpful. Well  here are some of the tips.
The rest of the tips are right here if you were wondering.


1. Do not follow any rules. 
There is no correct way to enter the writing world. Ask ten different writers how they got started, and you’ll get ten different responses. Some may have gone to journalism school, but most have not. I took only two or three writing courses at school, including Business Writing and the mandatory and utterly horrible Composition 101. And yet, without any experience or even a writing degree, at the end of my senior year I was offered a freelance gig at a national magazine with a circulation of 1.2 million. A year later, I was hired as an associate editor. No one told me how to do it. I just sent out silly writing samples that took me a few days to write. Meanwhile, my friends who all slaved away at writing workshops and literature camp hated me because I was getting paid to write despite the fact that I had never used a semicolon correctly. (I use them to replace the letter O. Is that wr;ng?)
2. Go to college.
Contrary to my last statement, college is important. Few, if any, media outlets will even look at writing clips from someone who has only a high school degree. Go to college. But…
3. Major in anything you dang well want to.
I never studied creative writing. You can major in anything and still become a writer. I majored in broadcasting. A writing degree may help, but I wouldn’t recommend it. And my reasons are three.
A. A good editor will identify talent regardless of your education background.
B. Some (not all) writing courses are detrimental to young writers because they are taught by angry, out-of-touch, lifelong losers. No one taught me how to write funny articles. If I handed my stories to an English professor, she would rip them to shreds and shout, “The semicolon is not an O!” And yet, here I am getting paid for my words. Weird, right? [Waves to all angry English teachers in the world.]
C. A book of poetry written by an English major? Yawn. A book of poetry written by a physical education major? Well, now I’m interested.
4. Read everything.
This is a no-brainer, but let me stress the importance of reading a wide variety of books. Sticking with one genre or one author is not allowed! You must branch out. Read the weirdest, stupidest, and worst books you can find. Much can be learned by reading ridiculous literature. To help find dumb books, play Dan’s Used Book Game.
Step One: Visit a used book store with your friends.
Step Two: Each person finds a bizarre and goofy book on the shelves. Use pre-set rules, such as, “The book cover must be green and feature a wolf.”
Step Three: Buy the books.
Step Four: Stand in a circle outside the store. Make everyone trades books by handing the book to the person on their left. That person MUST read the book handed to him, or else he loses.
Step Five: Laugh and eat cheese fries.
Step Six: Write up hilarious book reports to prove that you’ve read the book. You can also set up point values for things you find in the books. (Like murmurs.)
This is a fun game, and I guarantee you will learn more about writing by reading awful books than you will by reading War and Peace eight times.



1 comment:

  1. great tips! ill go add your sweets galore button to my blog, i didnt realize you had one,sorry! :)
    Juliet

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