Tagged With creative writing

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This week we have someone who desperately wants to escape his soulless career and become a writer, but he's too busy to write. Should he leave his job so he can finally find the time to put pen to paper? Or will he realise that it's possible to make time for his passion if he's willing to dig deep?

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Whether you like to draw, paint, write, choreograph, or play music, you're probably familiar with the creative block, where you just can't seem to do anything despite your motivation. To escape that rut, try doing what you do best, only terribly.

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Sometimes the hardest part about writing isn't finding ideas or knowing how to begin, it's maintaining a flow so you actually finish what you started. It's not quite total writer's block since you're already on the move, but a writer's road block, if you will. This trick that Star Trek: The Next Generation staff writers used can help you keep on truckin'.

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Stories have shapes. Any story you tell works best if you recognise its shape, then strengthen that shape. This applies to a story of any length, whether you're putting in your 50,000 words for National Novel Writing Month 2017, or honing your favourite party anecdote, or even marketing something, including yourself. It even applies to Hemingway's famous six-word story, "For sale: baby shoes, never worn."

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This past month I participated in National Novel Writing Month (also known as "NaNoWriMo"). It was fun, exhausting, stressful and, at times, miserable. But it was also one of the greatest lessons I've ever learned regarding time management and creativity.

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National Novel Writing Month is all about putting your head down and cranking out as many words as you can, but it can still be fun to make it a social experience, too. A write-in is just what you need to keep you and your fellow scribblers motivated. Here's how to set one up.

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Julian Gough, Irish novelist, memoirist, poet and playwright, gives densely packed advice in his essay How To Edit Your Own Lousy Writing. He explains the "job" that a first, second and third draft each do, editing a hypothetical scene as a concrete example.

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One of the best things about NaNoWriMo, or any terrifying deadline, is that it forces you to write quickly. (Hello, procrastinators.) If writing quickly is your stated goal, then you don't have time to do the number one thing that interrupts your writing flow: Think about whether what you're writing is good.

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The ability to write creatively is a skill not many people possess. While typically linked to the arts, good writing is also fueled by a surprising amount of science. Exploiting this knowledge can help take your prose to the next level. With that in mind, here are seven scientific ways to improve your writing.

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So you want to self-publish your book? You're in good company. Plenty of authors have gone ahead of you, working to prove that high-quality books can hold their own in the marketplace without the support of a traditional publisher. Amazon, of course, has changed the entire publishing landscape, but authors have been taking control of the publication process as far back as Charles Dickens, or the Brontë sisters. Self-publishing works, if done well -- and for the right reasons.