Without knowing it, I started my writing career when I used to write little stories for myself and put them away in a folder. Then the big break came when I was asked to be an editor of a gardening newsletter in 2000. I started to write for publication. People enjoyed reading my articles and I started getting awards. That gave me confidence and I started to think I could write a novel which I really wanted to do for a long time. When I moved south in 2011, I had more free time so I started writing in earnest and reading voraciously. I had plenty of ideas for my stories having lived in a third world country and then in New York and now in South Carolina and have seen the lives of people on both sides of the track. I haven’t won the Pulitzer yet but who cares. Not many new writers have but I’m happy to share my stories to readers who enjoy interesting books and learn something from reading them. So I began my journey.
Here are some tips I have learned along the way to become a better writer:
- First thing, you should do to be a better writer is to get a good dictionary.
- Second to a good dictionary, you should get a thesaurus.
- Read the work of good writers especially those on the genre you are working in or plan to work in.
- Find and establish a place to write comfortably and productively.
- Develop a good working habit and write every day.
- Write what you enjoy reading.
- Get inspiration from around you.
- Do your research.
- Use your imagination and let yourself fantasize.
- Stop procrastinating and write that first sentence already.
- Use Standard American English.
- Write your book for your audience.
- Begin a Writer’s Notebook.
- Set realistic writing goals.
- Familiarize yourself with general writing terms.
- Be Consistent.
- Where to begin – write one page at a time.
- Have a memorable title.
- Have an attention-grabbing book cover.
- Watch the chronology.
- Use flashbacks.
- Back up your novel as you go along.
- Finish the first draft and put it away for a while.
- After putting some distance away for a while, you’re now ready to reread it but read it slowly and absorb everything you read.
- Revise or rewrite your manuscript.
- Edit and proofread; Get critical feedback from someone you trust.
- Publish your manuscript.
- Be thankful.
- Research potential markets for your work.
- Think and act like a pro. Build your writing career and continue to grow as a writer.
Until next time. Stop and smell the roses.
Rosalinda, The Rose Lady
Author and Garden Writer