Friday, October 16, 2009

Writer's Moment - Richard Nordquist

Who's ready for some writing tips that are simple, straightforward and based on the observations of some of the best writers in the business?

This is exactly what Richard Nordquist delivers in his October 5th blogpost at Here's a taste of what you'll learn:

"If I had to give young writers advice," playwright Lillian Hellman once observed, "I would say don't listen to writers talk about writing or themselves."

Advice is cheap, the saying goes, because supply always exceeds demand. And yet, as many professional authors will tell you, aspiring writers are often hungry for advice--eager to pick up an insider's tip that will open the door to the writing life.

So let's take the question seriously. What's the best advice on writing you were ever given? Not words of encouragement, necessarily, but sound, practical advice that you took to heart and that helped you become a better writer.

While you're mulling it over, consider how a number of others have responded to the question.

  • Write One Inch at a Time - The best advice I've ever come across for any kind of writing is from Anne Lamott's book, Bird by Bird. She says to write just one inch at a time. I love that! It's so easy to be overwhelmed by a big project, but if I only have to concentrate on one inch, well, that I can handle. Eventually those inches will be feet and yards and whatever it takes to make a book. This is true for research, too, which can be overwhelming.--Editor and children's book author Maureen Boyd Biro, quoted in The ABC's of Writing for Children, by Elizabeth Koehler Pentacoff (Quill Driver Books, 2002)

Read the entire post here:

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