what up it’s the return of ‘any words is winning’
some useless writing tips, as we carreen into NaNoWriMo
- november is a shitty month to do a writing challenge unless you are a college student or a white man with a wife. ponder that one for a fuckin second
- that said, ten minutes writing, five minutes resting a la Nanowrimo works pretty good for getting a bunch of words out to edit later.
- if you need to look something up [[double bracket it]] in the text and keep on with your life
- [[double brackets]] in general are great for putting shit into that you know will need to be dealt with later or notes about the story itself, which is a writing tip I first learned from Piers Antony and which I suppose justifies his entire shitty oeuvre. I shouldn’t talk, I read a lot of them. I read a lot of Robert Heinlein too, and the takeaway I think I’m going for is “squeeze what you can out of shitty white male writers and ignore them for the rest of your life”
- highlight shit you know has to be dealt with later and keep writing so there’s a later to deal with it
- a joke is much funnier if you let the reader do half the work.
- never apologize, never explain - well, explain a little. but over explaining never works. trust your readers. in my experience they’re much smarter than you are.
- if you say things in a straightforward way without explaining that unlike in real life, a hoodorwooflersten is entirely unlike, but not quite, like a horse that acts like a dog, and allow the reader to figure out through context that a hoodorwooflersten barks but you can ride it, things go much much smoother.
- don’t be ashamed of your old stuff, no matter how shitty. practice makes perfect, and someone probably enjoyed it. respect your past self and them.
- read a shitton, and think about what you read
- done is better than perfect. done is better than perfect. done is better than perfect.
- writing, like drawing and painting, is an artistic skill made possible by technical training. the mechanics of writing can be learned. maybe you can’t be taught the spark. but you can learn to be ready for it
- you gotta write a lot of shitty stuff to one or two good stuff. I’m sorry. It’s dumb. I wish it didn’t work like that.
- There is One True Writing Method, and that is the one that works for you.
- If it doesn’t feel good don’t do it
- not like, bunnies and sparkles good, artistic good. there’s a difference. you can be moaning and bitching but it’s still good. I don’t know how to describe it. you have to chase the high.
- it works pretty good to have a goal of writing so many words (anywhere from 1 - 1000 is a pretty good ballpark) or time spent wrting per day but if you don’t make it it’s terribly counterproductive to beat yourself up about it
- unless you are paying the bills by writing, it’s okay to take a break from writing. Go hike. play a video game. if it doesn’t give you joy (sometimes a hard angry joy, to be sure) stop doing it. rest.