I'm amazed by writers who stop reading in their genre while writing their own books. The majority of them seem to be worried about becoming overly influenced by the voice, themes and even plot of the book they're reading.
Personally, I can't imagine not reading fiction for the many years it takes me to complete a novel. And in terms of being influenced: I'm actively looking for inspiration and ideas. I want to be influenced.
By Katrin Schumann
I sat down to write this post and have now written four openings and ditched them all.
What do writers need to hear in times like this? How can I be helpful to others when that which binds us--our obsessive love of words, books, writing--is overshadowed so universally by our fear of the unknown?
Do I tell you how to make lemons out of lemondade?* Do I reveal that I'm writing page after page despite the uncertainty and boredom
By Katrin Schumann
How long does it really take to write a book? From beginning the first draft to seeing it on bookshelves? It's generally accepted that more books = more success/ happiness. But what does being "productive" really mean, and does it make you happy as a writer?
I used to think the solution to almost all writerly problems lay in having more time—a comforting thought since I had so very little of that particular commodity. Simple, I thought: when I have more time, I'll do more writing, and I'll be happy and productive.
On some level ...
Last year, I didn't make any New Year's resolutions. Frankly, I was tired of pushing myself so hard, and I thought: hey, how about I just try my best this year? It felt like a gentle enough goal given that I had just started a new job and my first novel was about to be published. While I knew quite a bit about what was ahead (I'd published nonfiction before), I had very little idea about whether the outcome for this book would be good, bad or indifferent, and how I would end up feeling about it all
In the past few years, I've done an enormous amount of editing. I work as a manuscript consultant and help other writers develop their books, and I've (almost completely) rewritten two novels. Here are some of the things I've learned about the editing process:
TOP FALSE ASSUMPTIONS EDITING CLIENTS MAKE
1. An editor will "fix" your manuscript. (An editor can help you fix it.)