Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Just Do It

Now look, there's lots of information out there on being more productive as a writer. But it's really very simple. Just keep writing. Salon.com has some advice here, which is rather to-the-point, and therefore useful for any writer who finds themself floundering.

When I worked at a restaurant, I used to write poems on my notepad.

When I worked in a call centre, I used to research stories and novels on the internet, and once wrote an epic, humorous poem, 'The Fabliau of King Equitan', between calls.

When I worked at a solicitor's, I used to send myself all these little emails from my work email account to my private email account. They were all snippets of description, plot ideas, snatches of dialogue. I built a whole folder in my inbox and collated the short sections into longer pieces of work, or else polished them into short stories and poems. I wrote at least one full short story this way (and it was later published in Terror Scribes).

When I was at high school, college and university, I scribbled down poems during lectures, wrote whole sequences in dull RE lessons, and even once got caught by my English teacher writing a sex scene when she was trying to teach us grammar.

On nights out clubbing, when struck with ideas, I've stored them as a draft text message (before smartphones) or as documents I can transfer to my PC later (after smartphones).

I've written on postcards, receipts, kitchen roll, bus tickets, paper bags and my own hand. I've . . . well, you get the point!

The point is: those who want to write—and I mean really want to write—can and will find time. Unless, of course, they've had their arms chopped off by vicious bibliophobes. Then I'll let them off.

You're only justified calling yourself a writer if you write. Writing's a verb not some abstract noun. You just have to do it.

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