I am always thrilled when an author decides to stop by The Book Diva's Reads and share their thoughts. Today I welcome Fran Lewis, author of numerous books including Hidden Truth and Lies. This morning Ms. Lewis will be discussing steps to overcoming writer's block as well as tips on starting the writing process.
Every writer experiences this. This is not a permanent solution to the problem these are just suggestions. What do to when you have the DREADED
Have you ever had a great idea for a short story or an article and sat down to write and could not think of one single thing to put on the paper? You know this idea is great and yet you have no idea how you want to begin your writing, the feature statement to start the article or the hook to get everyone reading. Well, you might have what many writers do, the dreaded Writer's BLOCK! The good news it is definitely curable and only lasts as long you let it.
Don't fret. Here are some tips to cure this dreaded problem and get on with your life and your writing. Remember, these are my tips for overcoming this problem you might have your own that you might want to share with us too.
Step One: List all of your thought on the topic and your ideas on a piece of paper. You can create a graphic organizer, you can just list everything that you want to put in your article, and novel or just do a brief chapter outline, which is how I started by fourth children's book. I decided to create the chapter titles and then go from there. You can always rearrange them and put them in a different order when you are finished writing. Remember, this is your book and you need to create it your way.
Step Two: Always have at least three pens and a pad or notebook with you so that if an idea, thought, word, sentence or anything comes to mind you can write it down. If you forget to bring these tools I often list ideas in the
notepad in my cell phone and add them to my pad or my outline on my computer later on.
Step Three: Always write about what you know. If you have no idea where to begin, ask yourself or write down some questions that you want answered in your article, or short story. What is it you are trying to say in your article? What is your theme or central thought? What is the message you want to convey to readers in your article? Do you need to research it first?
In a novel, who is your main character and what are the traits you might want this character to have? What problems will you create for this person? Who is the enemy or villain? Who are your minor characters and what role will they play in your book?
Here We Go! YOU CAN DO IT!
Choose one area that you want to begin with and start writing. Do not worry about the quality of your writing or think about editing. Decide whether you want to use dialogue, narrator or what voice you want to use when writing later on. Set aside a set amount of time daily to write. Write phrases, fragments, clauses anything to start writing. You can polish and edit later.
At least 15 minutes a day should be set aside to start your writing. IF you can work it up to 30 minutes that would be great. Do not overwhelm yourself with taking on too much too soon. Find your own starting point and just write. You do not even have to reread what you wrote. Add ideas each day until you have created your own design or plan for what you want to say and write.
Step Two: Just start to write and free flow it as I call it. Just write whatever comes to mind and you want to say in your article or short story. If it is a novel, you might want to outline chapter one and go from there.
Step Three: Take a break
Step Four: Read what you wrote and see what you want to use and what you might use in a different article or not at all.
Create your outline or paragraph plan. What do you want to say in you first paragraph and see if you can write your opening hook, feature statement or word that will capture the attention of the reader? Ask yourself if you were reading an article or short story with this beginning would you continue on or not bother?
Step Five: Write your rough draft of your article or your short story. Do not read it over. Walk away and come back to it later on in the day or the next day. Look at your outline and see whether what you wrote coincides. If not, decide if what you wrote is really what you want to say or use your original ideas in your outline.
YOU ARE ALMOST THERE!
Finish your short story or article. Take a break before reading it over.
When you are sure that you love and feel comfortable with your piece, edit it slowly. Do what I do, get another pair of eyes to read it. We all miss typos and another person might see something we did not.
When I wrote my first children's book each chapter was really a separate short story. Read your article or story out loud and listen carefully. Tape it so that you can actually hear what you wrote and decide if you were listening to this piece being read would it keep your attention. Finally, complete it and decide where to get it published or posted. You might even share a chapter, section or piece of the article or story to get some feedback from other authors.
REMEMBER, there are many people who will give you negative feedback that is not constructive. IGNORE IT! I DO!
Feedback should deal with how to make your piece read and sound better and how you might develop the information you are writing about or your short story in a more meaningful way.
GO FOR IT! UNCLOG YOUR WRITING ARTERIES AND WRITE!
NO PRESCRIPTION NEEDED!
Fran worked in the NYC Public Schools as the Reading and Writing Staff Developer for over 36 years. She has three masters Degrees and a PD in Supervision and Administration. Currently, she is a member of Who's Who of America's Teachers and Who's Who of America's Executives from Cambridge. In addition, she is the author of three children's books and a fourth that has just been published on Alzheimer's disease in order to honor her mom and help create more awareness for a cure. The title of my new Alzheimer's book is Memories are Precious: Alzheimer's Journey: Ruth's Story and Sharp as a Tack or Scrambled Eggs: Which Describes Your Brain? Fran is the author of 13 titles.
Each story in this series teaches a lesson the person behind the stone should have learned before committing crime, hurting someone else, or generally failing at life.
We're about to enter Golden Stone Cemetery, where these unfortunate people are buried so deep you can barely find their markers. Their crimes are so heinous and their deeds so cruel that family members buried them here because they want to forget they ever existed.
Enter at your own risk.
Genre: Horror; Paranormal Suspense
Published by: Fideli Publishing Inc.
Publication Date: April 7th 2016
Number of Pages: 98
ISBN: 1604149124 (ISBN13: 9781604149128)
Series: Hidden Truths and Lies is the 4th book in Fran Lewis's FACES BEHIND THE STONES series of stand alone novellas.