Monday, December 12, 2016

Harsh But Eye-Opening Writing Tips

Not great, but it's only the first draft...

Here are ten hard-hitting writing tips from Cody Delistraty's article 21 Harsh But Eye-Opening Writing Tips From Great Authors.  

1. The first draft of everything is sh**. -Ernest Hemingway

2. Never use jargon words like reconceptualize, demassification, attitudinally, judgmentally. They are hallmarks of a pretentious a**. -David Ogilvy

3. If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy. – Dorothy Parker

4. Notice how many of the Olympic athletes effusively thanked their mothers for their success? “She drove me to my practice at four in the morning,” etc. Writing is not figure skating or skiing. Your mother will not make you a writer. My advice to any young person who wants to write is: leave home. -Paul Theroux

5. I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide. — Harper Lee

6. You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club. ― Jack London

7. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout with some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. — George Orwell

8. There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. ― W. Somerset Maugham

9. If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time — or the tools — to write. Simple as that. – Stephen King

10. Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong. – Neil Gaiman

For all 21 tips, click here.

Do you have a harsh but eye-opening tip to share?

Thanks for visiting and have a great week!


shelly said...


Maria McKenzie said...

I got a kick out of them:). Btw, like your new picture--very pretty!

Norma said...

These are the best tips ever!

Intangible Hearts said...

I love all of these but Maria is right, some of these are harsh. I just had a friend over last night who has known me since I was 10. Which means she should know everything about me and she still asked me silly questions like, "Did you always want to write?"(YES) or worse, "Did you know my (unemployed, lazy) boyfriend is writing a book?"(NO and I don't care) So I went into my boring life story about my writing internship and my restaurant column for the local paper and how advertising paid my bills etc, and when she yawned I knew it was time to ask whether she had ever read Penniless Hearts. "Ugh, almost."( WTF)

Maria McKenzie said...

@Norma: They really do provide some great advice!

@Eve: Almost? Pretty harsh:(. I have found that it's pretty hard to get friends and family (excluding my mom) to read my books.