Song of the Day: Express Yourself by Charles Wright
1. Write everyday
This is something I still struggle with, but it's the best piece of advice I've ever been given. I'll never forget the first time it actually resonated with me. It was in Carolyn See's book, Making a Literary Life. She said that in order to become a serious writer, you must write at least 1,000 words a day. I understand now what that means. You have to practice your craft.
2. It's okay if the first draft to sucks.
I learned this during National Novel Writing Month. I kept trying to get everything right the first time around. It only held me back. I would get so frustrated that I'd stop working on something. I've learned to let it all hang out and then go back and fix things later. Which leads me to my next point.
3. You must edit.
Editing is absolutely essential. It's one of the hardest things about being a writer. I think this is where the the work really comes in. It's when you test your dedication to being a writer. You sharpen your skills when you edit, but you must put in the time.
4. Read everything you can get your hands on.
Reading was something I've always done anyway, (since the age of 3) but it's still one of the best pieces of advice I've ever received. I'm a huge advocate of reading, and there's no doubt that it has made an impact on my writing. Reading not only makes you smarter, but if you read like a writer, you subconsciously develop the skills you need to be successful.
5. Just write.
Don't try to be like anyone else. Don't try to write anything that's not true to yourself. Be original and just write what you want to write.
What about you? What's the best writing advice you've ever received?