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3 Writing Tips From Successful Authors : May the 4th be With You!

Posted by Arthur Gutch on Fri, Jul 04, 2014 @ 09:06 AM

Happy 4th of July!

This day marks the beginning of our Independence as a country. Let this day also serve as a reminder of the freedom we as authors now have to offer our work to the world, without past limitations and with limitless opportunities to spread our words! May the 4th be with you!

4th of july Author

Professional authors who have battled through adversity and found literary success, have much to say about how they fulfilled their life goals. If you are an aspiring author, their experiences, knowledge and general encouragement can be a lifeline to you as you attempt to reach your goals. Read below for some of these helpful tips:

Read as much as often as possible:

Samuel Johnson, who is sometimes referred to as Dr. Johnson, made lasting contributions to English literature.  Johnson lived from 1709 to 1784, but his words of advice still ring true today in regards to writers loving the written word.

"The greatest part of a writer's time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book." Samuel Johnson

American playwright and novelist Larry L. King also believed reading played a large part in writing as well.

"Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts." Larry L. King

Write, even when you don't feel like writing:

Successful authors agree that you cannot always wait for inspiration when you are attempting to write a novel. American crime writer Lawrence Block, who was named the Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America in 1994 and is best known for two long-running New York set series, has the following to say about writing "something" no matter what:

"One thing that helps is to give myself permission to write badly. I tell myself that I'm going to do my five or 10 pages no matter what, and that I can always tear them up the following morning if I want. I'll have lost nothing--writing and tearing up five pages would leave me no further behind than if I took the day off." Lawrence Block

As with anything in life, the more you practice, the better you will get. Although practice will never make perfect, it can make you good at what you do. Therefore, if you goal is to become a successful author, then you should write as much as possible.

Don't allow your narrative to sound like writing:

When writing a novel, especially in the fiction genre, you want to avoid sounding too sophisticated, wordy or overly proper. In other words, your writing shouldn't read like writing, instead, it should reveal a real world full of real characters dealing with real emotions and situations. Elmore Leonard, who was a successful American novelist and screenwriter who specialized in crime fiction and suspense thrillers, had the following to say about the importance of not allowing your novel to read like writing:

"If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it. Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I can't allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the narrative." Elmore Leonard

Following the advice of those who have become successful writers is a smart way to ensure you are on the right track. The tips and quotes above from famous authors are meant to inspire you to keep up the hard work and find your own success one day.

Keep the Faith and may the Fourth be with You!

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