I know I've done a similar post before, but I believe it deserves repeating - and updating. Everyone has tips for writing, and there are good and bad tips. These are just my opinions, but they are tips I follow when writing! Here is an updated list.
1) Never give up! Rejections suck, there's NO denying that, but can also be used to make your work better. Keep going. Never stop writing. If you never stop you may reach your dreams, but if you quit it's sure you never will.
2) Write a lot. Write every day. Try to resist the pull of the television (Netflix is both judgy - yes I'm ALWAYS still watching- and it's addictive) because you're not writing when you're watching TV. And I'd you try to tell me you can multitask and do both, I'm going to bet it's not your best work. But write all the time, as often as you can. Even if you don't feel like it, try, you can write about not wanting to write. If you aren't writing you aren't improving your craft. With every critique received and given you will improve. With every manuscript, every word, you improve.
3) Read a lot. Read in your genre, read other genres, read good books, bad books, lots of books! Find what you think works and what doesn't and learn from it! You can think about your writing while you read others' writing.
4) Be a Beta reader or a critique partner. Even better be both. AND have both! Your writing will improve when you help others improve. This one is SO true, and I didn't always know it, but now that I do it's a huge one for me.
5) Edit! Revise! Edit! Get other opinions and help editing. Edit yourself. Edit, edit, edit, edit until you want to pull your hair out. Edit until your eyeballs are about to fall out. Then edit once more. - This one is harder for me. I always want to jump into a new story before my last one is polished. But true editing and polishing makes the difference between a writer and an author, so put in the work. Edit your manuscript. Then have people read it and point out what you've missed. Edit it again. And then reread and revise it once more. Editing is the difference between a writer and an author.
6) When you can, have fun! Write what you like, and like what you're writing. If you hate what you're putting together, if it's change and now you aren't having fun... Do major edits or even start over. Get back to loving your project. It's important to write for love when you can.
7) For me plot is huge. Plot can get me through bad, bad writing. Make sure your plot is amazing. Characters, voice, pace, dialogue, that's all important too. But for me plot is a big deal.
8) Increase your vocabulary. Do it by reading, studying, or even just buying a word of the day calendar. The more words you know the better your writing is. Repetitive words get annoying to read. Thesauruses are great, but don't plug in a word you don't already know.
9) Have interesting characters. They don't have to be likable (lots of mine Really are nasty) but make them super interesting! Give the reader a reason to keep reading about them. Love to hate them, love to love them. love to sympathize... just make sure there's a reason to keep reading about them.
10) If you're not good with the technical, grammar, structure, etc., find someone who is to help you edit. Pay an editor if you're willing. It will be a huge investment. You won't regret it!
11) Show don't tell. I read an amazing article with suggestions from the amazing Chuck Palahniuk, which of course I can't find right now, but he reminds writers instead of saying how something is true show it. Be in a debate proving your case detail by detail. Make the reader feel it and realize it on their own. Good dialogue can do this too. Palahniuk excels in a type called dangerous writing, and it's very show versus tell. In regards to Palahniuk check out dangerous writing. CAVEAT, it's impossible to show everything. You need a balance. When you need to tell do it as needed and beautifully, like the rest of your showing and all of your writing.
12) Learn the rules. Then break them sometimes, not constantly, but definitely occasionally.
13) Make writer friends. Collaborate, workshop, brainstorm, help each other get better. The writing community is amazing! Use it. Critique partners and beta readers are NECESSARY and also wonderful.
14) DON'T ever bite the hand that feeds you. Keep your frustrations to yourself or at the very least off social media. Don't bash any agent, or publisher, editor, teacher, or any member of the writing community publicly. Ever. Don't do it. It will bite you in the ass. You'll regret it. The publishing world is small, and you will burn bridges so quickly. Be nice. Use what your mama taught you and don't say anything if you can't say anything nice!
15) Do what feels right. Follow your heart. An agent or publisher will give you suggestions (betas and Cps too) but remember that it's your book, your vision, only do what you think is right.
16) Dialogue is important. If it's a weakness of yours strive to improve it. Believable, relatable, GOOD dialogue is bomb-digity. Yes that's technical. Sweat :)
16) Always be wiling to write the next project. If one doesn't get you published, the next might, or the next. Just like your writing improves with every project so do your chances. Don't put all of your hopes onto one book, one project. The more you have written the better. Again NEVER STOP WRITING.
These are just mine... do you have any amazing writing tips you live by?
Don't just trust my opinions, read on and find the tips that work best for you. Make up your one tip list! What have I missed?
AND Here are more places to find writing tips:
*Other successful authors share their tips
*This one claims to have the best writing tips ever... bold statement
*And who doesn't love tips from Huffington Post?