Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Writer A-HA Moments!



What is the finest piece of writing advice you ever received? It can be something exclusively concerning the craft of writing itself, something that motivated you to keep moving forward, or something that changed everything in relation to you as a writer. It can be from a famous author, a critique partner, your spouse, your dog (my dog gives great advice)! What was YOUR "A-HA Moment" and how did it help you improve as a writer?

My A-HA moment: Never buying into trends and sticking to my gut. Before I started writing, I didn't realize how competitive the markets were for certain types of books. I believed we should write what moves us--as that will be our best writing. I got nervous about that for a while, thinking maybe I should think more about the market, but then I realized if I'm not fully invested in what I'm writing, my readers won't be either.

What was you’re A-HA moment??

16 comments:

  1. Sticking to my voice instead of emulating other writers I like. Took a while to listen to my instincts on that, but now I know it's for the best!

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  2. Tere, that's so true too. You have to put your favorite writers' voices off to the side and remember who YOU are. Great advice!

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  3. Realizing that I actually had to put pen to paper, if I really wanted to get anywhere.

    :)

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  4. Robeia, starting is a hard part, but keeping it going can be even harder sometimes! Step by step, inch by inch.... ;)

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  5. Mine was when I finally learned to trust the reader and not hold their hand by spelling out every detail for them. LESS is truly MORE. :)

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  6. DL, I was totally that way too! Every twist and turn had to be described! UGH!

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  7. Going with that 'idea' currently in my mind, no matter what genre it may fall into. Above all, believe in yourself Hilary. :)xx

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  8. Jack, very good advice. Genre Schmenre! I think the only time that's a bad idea is when you want to do a horror/picture book. Don't think that would go over to well! ;)

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  9. To never give up. So many blogger friends who've gotten published had to persist in the midst of rejections to finally get an agent and published.

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  10. Natalie, yeah, that was one of the first lessons I learned. After months of rejection and being a big baby about it, I finally told my husband we were only going to have a good weekend if I got a rejection letter that week. The more I got, the better our weekend! As you can imagine, I had some fantastic weekends!! ;)

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  11. hi miss hilary! i was soooo scared for my writing cause i didnt think i was any good or anyone could like my stuff or maybe would just laugh at what i write. then one of my doctors said write just because you love writing. that was a real big my aha moment for me.
    ...hugs from lenny

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  12. Lenny, your writing is great! I know that for fact! And yes, your doctor was so right--do it because you LOVE it! Very few people in this world get to do what they love. :)

    Big Hugs and thanks for my Thanksgiving card--loved it!

    Hilary

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  13. Wow, lots of interesting A-HA moments.

    Mine is to work through the fear of rejection and submit, submit, submit.

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  14. Susanne, yes! I know a few writers who gave up after just a handful of rejections. I just couldn't do that. Submit, submit, submit is right!! :)

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  15. I had a similar piece of advice when I was flipping amonst genres, trying to decide where I should focus. Following my heart is making me happy - hope it works out in the long run! :)

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  16. My definitive Aha moment comes in two parts-

    First, finding other writers (Older than 5) who didn't think my love of fantasy in the tradition of Potter (Beatrix, that is), the late Brian Jacques, of our own Hilary's Nightshade City for that matter, was illogical.

    I had to endure many hurtful, sometimes demoralizing critiques of my writing before I "Found my Tribe" as Julia Glass often says, a sentiment I share as well.

    But they were worth waiting for, and if I can one day give that kind of support and acceptance to a writer, all the pain I endure on my path will have an added benefit, outside my goals of breaking in this world, and staying in.

    Second, echoing what others before me replied, to write like ME, not to try imitating someone else.

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