Top Ten Writing Tips #9 – Keeping Momentum

Ideally writing time should be such a normal part of your life you simply get on with it without thinking, like brushing your teeth before bed, or having breakfast. For some people this comes naturally, others (me) need to work … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #8 – Be Bold

I’ve heard more than one agent or editor say the quality of writing in their submission stack or their slush pile is not that bad. They say there are a few terrible pieces, a few that stand out, and in … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #7 – Nothing is Precious

I made a lot of mistakes in my quest to learn how to get words down onto the page. This was nothing to do with how to write in a sense of technical mastery, just simply bums on seats and … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #6 – Weasel Words

Everything in writing is personal – style, subject matter, genres, themes. Half of it you don’t know you’re doing. War is a backdrop in several of my stories, though I’m not that interested in writing war stories. At least, I … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #5 – Who Do You Write For?

Ask an agent or editor whether your next novel should have the themes or settings of whatever is currently popular (vampire romance, suburban porn, etc.) and they’ll invariably say: ‘No, just write what you want.’ They’ll justify this by saying … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #4 – Killing Those Darlings

Half the world says this, the rest of us nod wisely and turn away. I used to be a wise nodder and I was thinking, ‘But what does this mean?’ It’s a good question. The earliest reference I could find … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #3 – Writers Write

There have been times when I’ve tried to write myself out of a shitty life situation. I can now report my findings – it didn’t work. What I did manage to do was write a lot. I took it seriously, … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #2 – Writer’s Block is Your Friend

There’s a lot of opinion on writer’s block, whether its exists, how to get past it, what the whole writing life thing is all about. Here’s some, and here’s some more. Not much is about why we get stuck and … Continue reading

Top Ten Writing Tips #1 – Tell the Reader Everything

Gaie Sebold recently posted her 10 Top Tips for Writers on Pete Sutton’s excellent BRSBKBLOG. Reading it (and you should, there’s some great advice there) I realised my Top Ten would be very different. Not better, just different. Different people … Continue reading