/page/3

1. Don’t go out to lunch.

2. Don’t go online until lunch.

3. Don’t start writing your novel until you know your characters very, very well. What they’d do if they saw somebody shoplifting. What they were like at school. What shoes they wear. Spend days – weeks, months – being them until they thicken up and start to breathe. VS Pritchett said, “There’s no such thing as plot, only characters.” Once you know them well they’ll lead you into their stories. If you start too soon you won’t have a clue what they’re going to do and all is chaos.

4. However hopeless and inadequate you feel, leave that self behind. Psych yourself up until you’re confident that the world will be interested in what happens to your characters. Confidence is key.

5. Don’t “write”. “Writing” is about showing off, or imitating other writers. “Writing” mistakes solemnity for seriousness. Just write. Have courage, be truthful, be true to your characters.

6. Don’t be daunted. Writing a novel is a huge adventure; when it’s going well it’s more fun than fun. When it stutters to a halt put it aside. Go for a swim, go for a walk, take a week off. Don’t panic or be afraid; you and your characters are in it together. Trust them to come to your rescue. Of course it’s a long haul, but you always knew that, didn’t you?

7. If a character stubbornly refuses to come alive, switch to the first person. Suddenly they’ll be speaking to you. Later you can change it back again if you need to.

8. I have to know the ending before I can begin. Map out as much as you need but don’t over-plot or you can constrict your characters. Let them change it as they go along.

9. You don’t have to know the ending.

10. In other words, you don’t have to listen to anyone’s advice. There are no rules to break. That’s the pleasure of it. Read The Paris Review interviews with writers – everyone has their own methods and if a novel is truly alive it will break all their rules too.

11. Discover the times when you’re most creative – mornings, nights, afternoons – and clear the time to work then. Many writers find the mornings are best, and the afternoons are only good for editorial corrections, or getting the washing done. Others can only work through the night, drunk.

12. Sort out your priorities. Don’t clean your home, other than as a displacement activity. There won’t be time. You’ll probably neglect your friends too, and even your personal hygiene. If you have children, however, try to keep them fed.

apolysis:

The most powerful image of duality and the cycle of life I’ve ever known.


I would like a postcard of this.

apolysis:

The most powerful image of duality and the cycle of life I’ve ever known.

I would like a postcard of this.

(Source: myskinnybones, via thekinginthen0rth)

nprfreshair:

Stephen King talks to Terry Gross about whether his writing changed after being hit by a car and getting addicted to Oxycontin, a habit which he has since kicked:

When I said that I wasn’t going to write or when I was going to retire, I was doing a lot of Oxycontin for pain and I was still having a lot of pain and it’s a depressive drug anyway and I was kind of a depressed human being because the therapy was painful. The recovery was slow and the whole thing just seemed like too much work, and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll concentrate on getting better and I probably won’t want to write anymore,’ but as health and vitality came back, the urge to write came back. But here’s the thing: I’m on the inside and I’m not the best person to ask if my writing changed after that accident. I don’t really know the answer to that. I do know that … was close, that was really being close to stepping out. The accident and, a couple years later I had double pneumonia and that was close to stepping out of this life as well, and I think you have a couple of close brushes with death like that, it probably has [effect]. Somebody said, ‘The prospect of imminent death has a wonderful clarifying effect on the mind,’ and I don’t know if that’s true, but I do think it cause some changes, some evolution in the way a person works, but on a day-by-day basis I just still enjoy doing what I’m doing.


Image of Stephen King by PILGRIM via Wired

nprfreshair:

Stephen King talks to Terry Gross about whether his writing changed after being hit by a car and getting addicted to Oxycontin, a habit which he has since kicked:

When I said that I wasn’t going to write or when I was going to retire, I was doing a lot of Oxycontin for pain and I was still having a lot of pain and it’s a depressive drug anyway and I was kind of a depressed human being because the therapy was painful. The recovery was slow and the whole thing just seemed like too much work, and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll concentrate on getting better and I probably won’t want to write anymore,’ but as health and vitality came back, the urge to write came back. But here’s the thing: I’m on the inside and I’m not the best person to ask if my writing changed after that accident. I don’t really know the answer to that. I do know that … was close, that was really being close to stepping out. The accident and, a couple years later I had double pneumonia and that was close to stepping out of this life as well, and I think you have a couple of close brushes with death like that, it probably has [effect]. Somebody said, ‘The prospect of imminent death has a wonderful clarifying effect on the mind,’ and I don’t know if that’s true, but I do think it cause some changes, some evolution in the way a person works, but on a day-by-day basis I just still enjoy doing what I’m doing.

Image of Stephen King by PILGRIM via Wired

neil-gaiman:

-Neil Gaiman  (Make Good Art)

The Chip Kidd designs for the book are remarkable…

And it’s published tomorrow.

(Source: amortentiaquill)

10 Steps to Finding Your Writing Voice

amandaonwriting:

An exercise for finding your voice

Not sure where to start? No problem. Most of us need help understanding our voice. Here’s a short exercise that can help you — just follow these 10 steps:

  1. Describe yourself in three adjectives.
    Example: snarky, fun, and flirty.
  2. Ask (and answer) the question: “Is this how I talk?”
  3. Imagine your ideal reader. Describe him in detail. Then, write to him, and only him.
    Example: My ideal reader is smart. He has a sense of humor, a short attention span, and is pretty savvy when it comes to technology and pop culture. He’s sarcastic and fun, but doesn’t like to waste time. And he loves pizza.
  4. Jot down at least five books, articles, or blogs you like to read. Spend some time examining them. How are they alike? How are they different? What abouthow they’re written intrigues you? Often what we admire is what we aspire to be.
    Example: Copyblogger, Chris Brogan, Seth Godin, Ernest Hemingway, and C.S. Lewis. I like these writers, because their writing is intelligent, pithy, and poignant.
  5. List your favorite artistic and cultural influences. Are you using these as references in your writing, or avoiding them, because you don’t think people would understand them?
    Example: I use some of my favorite bands’ music in my writing to teach deeper lessons.
  6. Ask other people: “What’s my voice? What do I sound like?” Take notes of the answers you get.
  7. Free-write. Just go nuts. Write in a way that’s most comfortable to you, without editing. Then go back and read it, asking yourself, “Do I publish stuff that sounds like this?”
  8. Read something you’ve recently written, and honestly ask yourself, “Is this something I would read?” If not, you must change your voice.
  9. Ask yourself: “Do I enjoy what I’m writing as I’m writing it?” If it feels like work, you may not be writing like yourself. (Caveat: Not every writer loves the act of writing, but it’s at least worth asking.)
  10. Pay attention to how you’re feeling. How do you feel before publishing?Afraid? Nervous? Worried? Good. You’re on the right track. If you’re completely calm, then you probably aren’t being vulnerable. Try writing something dangerous, something a little more you. Fear can be good. It motivates you to make your writing matter.

(via teachingliteracy)

The Ego, however, is not who you really are. The ego is your self-image; it is your social mask; it is the role you are playing. Your social mask thrives on approval. It wants control, and it is sustained by power, because it lives in fear.
– Deepak Chopra (via drug-fairy)

(Source: lazyyogi, via thekinginthen0rth)

Summer cut

Summer cut

1. Don’t go out to lunch.

2. Don’t go online until lunch.

3. Don’t start writing your novel until you know your characters very, very well. What they’d do if they saw somebody shoplifting. What they were like at school. What shoes they wear. Spend days – weeks, months – being them until they thicken up and start to breathe. VS Pritchett said, “There’s no such thing as plot, only characters.” Once you know them well they’ll lead you into their stories. If you start too soon you won’t have a clue what they’re going to do and all is chaos.

4. However hopeless and inadequate you feel, leave that self behind. Psych yourself up until you’re confident that the world will be interested in what happens to your characters. Confidence is key.

5. Don’t “write”. “Writing” is about showing off, or imitating other writers. “Writing” mistakes solemnity for seriousness. Just write. Have courage, be truthful, be true to your characters.

6. Don’t be daunted. Writing a novel is a huge adventure; when it’s going well it’s more fun than fun. When it stutters to a halt put it aside. Go for a swim, go for a walk, take a week off. Don’t panic or be afraid; you and your characters are in it together. Trust them to come to your rescue. Of course it’s a long haul, but you always knew that, didn’t you?

7. If a character stubbornly refuses to come alive, switch to the first person. Suddenly they’ll be speaking to you. Later you can change it back again if you need to.

8. I have to know the ending before I can begin. Map out as much as you need but don’t over-plot or you can constrict your characters. Let them change it as they go along.

9. You don’t have to know the ending.

10. In other words, you don’t have to listen to anyone’s advice. There are no rules to break. That’s the pleasure of it. Read The Paris Review interviews with writers – everyone has their own methods and if a novel is truly alive it will break all their rules too.

11. Discover the times when you’re most creative – mornings, nights, afternoons – and clear the time to work then. Many writers find the mornings are best, and the afternoons are only good for editorial corrections, or getting the washing done. Others can only work through the night, drunk.

12. Sort out your priorities. Don’t clean your home, other than as a displacement activity. There won’t be time. You’ll probably neglect your friends too, and even your personal hygiene. If you have children, however, try to keep them fed.

apolysis:

The most powerful image of duality and the cycle of life I’ve ever known.


I would like a postcard of this.

apolysis:

The most powerful image of duality and the cycle of life I’ve ever known.

I would like a postcard of this.

(Source: myskinnybones, via thekinginthen0rth)

(Source: alunaes, via ghostcats)

nprfreshair:

Stephen King talks to Terry Gross about whether his writing changed after being hit by a car and getting addicted to Oxycontin, a habit which he has since kicked:

When I said that I wasn’t going to write or when I was going to retire, I was doing a lot of Oxycontin for pain and I was still having a lot of pain and it’s a depressive drug anyway and I was kind of a depressed human being because the therapy was painful. The recovery was slow and the whole thing just seemed like too much work, and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll concentrate on getting better and I probably won’t want to write anymore,’ but as health and vitality came back, the urge to write came back. But here’s the thing: I’m on the inside and I’m not the best person to ask if my writing changed after that accident. I don’t really know the answer to that. I do know that … was close, that was really being close to stepping out. The accident and, a couple years later I had double pneumonia and that was close to stepping out of this life as well, and I think you have a couple of close brushes with death like that, it probably has [effect]. Somebody said, ‘The prospect of imminent death has a wonderful clarifying effect on the mind,’ and I don’t know if that’s true, but I do think it cause some changes, some evolution in the way a person works, but on a day-by-day basis I just still enjoy doing what I’m doing.


Image of Stephen King by PILGRIM via Wired

nprfreshair:

Stephen King talks to Terry Gross about whether his writing changed after being hit by a car and getting addicted to Oxycontin, a habit which he has since kicked:

When I said that I wasn’t going to write or when I was going to retire, I was doing a lot of Oxycontin for pain and I was still having a lot of pain and it’s a depressive drug anyway and I was kind of a depressed human being because the therapy was painful. The recovery was slow and the whole thing just seemed like too much work, and I thought, ‘Well, I’ll concentrate on getting better and I probably won’t want to write anymore,’ but as health and vitality came back, the urge to write came back. But here’s the thing: I’m on the inside and I’m not the best person to ask if my writing changed after that accident. I don’t really know the answer to that. I do know that … was close, that was really being close to stepping out. The accident and, a couple years later I had double pneumonia and that was close to stepping out of this life as well, and I think you have a couple of close brushes with death like that, it probably has [effect]. Somebody said, ‘The prospect of imminent death has a wonderful clarifying effect on the mind,’ and I don’t know if that’s true, but I do think it cause some changes, some evolution in the way a person works, but on a day-by-day basis I just still enjoy doing what I’m doing.

Image of Stephen King by PILGRIM via Wired

neil-gaiman:

-Neil Gaiman  (Make Good Art)

The Chip Kidd designs for the book are remarkable…

And it’s published tomorrow.

(Source: amortentiaquill)

10 Steps to Finding Your Writing Voice

amandaonwriting:

An exercise for finding your voice

Not sure where to start? No problem. Most of us need help understanding our voice. Here’s a short exercise that can help you — just follow these 10 steps:

  1. Describe yourself in three adjectives.
    Example: snarky, fun, and flirty.
  2. Ask (and answer) the question: “Is this how I talk?”
  3. Imagine your ideal reader. Describe him in detail. Then, write to him, and only him.
    Example: My ideal reader is smart. He has a sense of humor, a short attention span, and is pretty savvy when it comes to technology and pop culture. He’s sarcastic and fun, but doesn’t like to waste time. And he loves pizza.
  4. Jot down at least five books, articles, or blogs you like to read. Spend some time examining them. How are they alike? How are they different? What abouthow they’re written intrigues you? Often what we admire is what we aspire to be.
    Example: Copyblogger, Chris Brogan, Seth Godin, Ernest Hemingway, and C.S. Lewis. I like these writers, because their writing is intelligent, pithy, and poignant.
  5. List your favorite artistic and cultural influences. Are you using these as references in your writing, or avoiding them, because you don’t think people would understand them?
    Example: I use some of my favorite bands’ music in my writing to teach deeper lessons.
  6. Ask other people: “What’s my voice? What do I sound like?” Take notes of the answers you get.
  7. Free-write. Just go nuts. Write in a way that’s most comfortable to you, without editing. Then go back and read it, asking yourself, “Do I publish stuff that sounds like this?”
  8. Read something you’ve recently written, and honestly ask yourself, “Is this something I would read?” If not, you must change your voice.
  9. Ask yourself: “Do I enjoy what I’m writing as I’m writing it?” If it feels like work, you may not be writing like yourself. (Caveat: Not every writer loves the act of writing, but it’s at least worth asking.)
  10. Pay attention to how you’re feeling. How do you feel before publishing?Afraid? Nervous? Worried? Good. You’re on the right track. If you’re completely calm, then you probably aren’t being vulnerable. Try writing something dangerous, something a little more you. Fear can be good. It motivates you to make your writing matter.

(via teachingliteracy)

The Ego, however, is not who you really are. The ego is your self-image; it is your social mask; it is the role you are playing. Your social mask thrives on approval. It wants control, and it is sustained by power, because it lives in fear.
– Deepak Chopra (via drug-fairy)

(Source: lazyyogi, via thekinginthen0rth)

"

1. Don’t go out to lunch.

2. Don’t go online until lunch.

3. Don’t start writing your novel until you know your characters very, very well. What they’d do if they saw somebody shoplifting. What they were like at school. What shoes they wear. Spend days – weeks, months – being them until they thicken up and start to breathe. VS Pritchett said, “There’s no such thing as plot, only characters.” Once you know them well they’ll lead you into their stories. If you start too soon you won’t have a clue what they’re going to do and all is chaos.

4. However hopeless and inadequate you feel, leave that self behind. Psych yourself up until you’re confident that the world will be interested in what happens to your characters. Confidence is key.

5. Don’t “write”. “Writing” is about showing off, or imitating other writers. “Writing” mistakes solemnity for seriousness. Just write. Have courage, be truthful, be true to your characters.

6. Don’t be daunted. Writing a novel is a huge adventure; when it’s going well it’s more fun than fun. When it stutters to a halt put it aside. Go for a swim, go for a walk, take a week off. Don’t panic or be afraid; you and your characters are in it together. Trust them to come to your rescue. Of course it’s a long haul, but you always knew that, didn’t you?

7. If a character stubbornly refuses to come alive, switch to the first person. Suddenly they’ll be speaking to you. Later you can change it back again if you need to.

8. I have to know the ending before I can begin. Map out as much as you need but don’t over-plot or you can constrict your characters. Let them change it as they go along.

9. You don’t have to know the ending.

10. In other words, you don’t have to listen to anyone’s advice. There are no rules to break. That’s the pleasure of it. Read The Paris Review interviews with writers – everyone has their own methods and if a novel is truly alive it will break all their rules too.

11. Discover the times when you’re most creative – mornings, nights, afternoons – and clear the time to work then. Many writers find the mornings are best, and the afternoons are only good for editorial corrections, or getting the washing done. Others can only work through the night, drunk.

12. Sort out your priorities. Don’t clean your home, other than as a displacement activity. There won’t be time. You’ll probably neglect your friends too, and even your personal hygiene. If you have children, however, try to keep them fed.

"
"The Ego, however, is not who you really are. The ego is your self-image; it is your social mask; it is the role you are playing. Your social mask thrives on approval. It wants control, and it is sustained by power, because it lives in fear."

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