Advice for Authors

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Advice for Authors

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If you love to read or write books, Goodreads is a wonderful place to spend time on a regular basis. Recently, I completed the site’s “Author Interview Questions,” and offered the following thoughts for active or aspiring authors:

How do you deal with writer’s block?

I don’t believe in it. I only believe in lazy writers. Sit down and write everyday, and hit your word goal whether you think the material is good or not. You’ll improve it later, but right now your job is to get out of the way and let the prose fill the page.

What’s the best thing about being a writer?

The rush that comes when you get a great idea and then act upon it is second to none. Those special occasions when someone reads your work and likes it are also life-changing. When you write, you unleash your creative potential, and there are no limits to the worlds and characters you can manufacture. Remain tenacious in your writing, and you will never be bored with life because you will keep re-inventing life.

What’s your advice for aspiring writers?

Write everyday! Find a consistent time that works for you and keep it as a sacred appointment. Read about the mechanics of writing if you must, but keep this to a minimum. Spend most of your time either writing, editing your writing, or fleshing out ideas for stories. Pay attention to the amount of time you waste talking about wanting to write and get published, vs. actually writing. Steer clear of spending lots of time with other writers who talk more than they walk! Banish all negative thinking from your mind, including comparing yourselves to other authors who have already found publishing success. Writing is hard enough without negativity renting space in your head!

What are you currently working on?

I’m working on the second draft of a novel based in Daytona Beach, Fla., about a group of husbands who must deal with their wives’ sudden disappearance after they leave on a girls’ weekend trip. It’s currently about 120,000 words, which is much longer than anything I’ve written to date. I hope to publish it by the end of 2014.

How do you get inspired to write?

I have no consistent “method” of inspiration. Ideas fall into my brain in all sorts of settings. However, I’ve learned that discipline and resiliency are even more important than “inspiration.” I have committed to a goal of writing 2,000 words of fiction early each morning, before I do anything else. I find that this continuity welcomes lots of creativity and motivation to keep going. I guess you could say that I find “sustainable inspiration” within this disciplined routine. I used to believe I had to have ideal conditions for sitting down to write, but that was giving away too much of my power; and, at the heart of things, was simply a fear-based excuse.