There’s something so thrilling and delicious about reading a really hooky first sentence or engaging first pages in a book – you just know you’re about to be taken on a great ride.
Is there a writer on the planet who doesn’t want their first pages to thrill, delight and intrigue?
I’m guessing no.
And on a practical level – first pages are generally the first thing judges, editors, publishers and assessors get to see of your work. So take a moment to answer these questions.
There’s no right answer – they’re simply a list of provocations to help you ensuree your first pages are as awesomely shiny as they can be.
Continue reading Want to Hook Your Reader Immediately?
I want to write a screenplay/book/play BUT I don’t have time.
I want to finish my book/short film BUT can’t because I have children.
I want to apply for that writer’s grant I heard about BUT there’s probably no point.
I want to enter that short story competition BUT only real writers ever win.
I want to write a book BUT I’m afraid I’m not good enough yet.
I want to write short stories BUT I worry I’m too old to start now.
I want to write BUT I worry I’m too young and that people won’t take me seriously.
I want to write for TV BUT I don’t know other writers or industry people.
I want to write plays BUT I have to spend most of my time making a living.
I want to write one day BUT I’m waiting until I retire/until work calms down/until the house is renovated/until I’ve done one more workshop /until the kids have left school etc, etc, etc, etc.
And the list goes on.
I hear variations of these excuses all the time. And sometimes I hear one or two coming out of my own mouth – goddamnit. But there are always numerous, perfectly freaking logical reasons for not investing your time in writing and, um, so what?
Continue reading I Hate Big Buts and I Cannot Lie
I’m frequently asked by writers how they can keep themselves motivated and keep their project moving forward. This is a challenge I’m very familiar with so I duly offer up a bunch of tips and techniques I’ve developed over the years, and the one that really works for me consistently is – be accountable to somebody.
There’s nothing like somebody waiting for you to deliver to give you a case of the giddy-ups.
And how would it be if it wasn’t just one person waiting for you to deliver but a whole bunch?
Ladies and gentlemen – I give you – the writers group.
Continue reading 10 Excellent Reasons To Join A Writers Group