• Alwia

Advice I'd Give my Younger Writer Self

I started writing six years ago. That's six years worth of fumbling, failing and making lots of mistakes. It sounds terrible, but this, in fact, is good news. Mistakes are good, failure is good; because not only have I learned so much through them, but I now can share my experiences with all of you lovely virtual humans.

Advice 1

Do your bloody research

By this I mean maybe, just maybe it would be a good idea to read into the technical aspects of creative writing and story-telling before writing a whole damned book. Doing this would have spared me the trouble of chucking an 85 thousand word manuscript and starting all over again.

Advice 2

You will fail

This is a guarantee and yes, it will hurt. Rejection still hurts to be honest but God, I was such a clueless sissy at the start of my writing journey. To all those considering writing as a career path, start thickening your skin. Writing can be so exhausting mentally and emotionally.

Advice 3

If you don’t take your career seriously no one else will

Now come on...You really can’t expect people to believe in you as a writer if you don’t. Start believing. Start seeing yourself as a writer.

Advice 4

Impostor syndrome is a bitch

Even though you can try to believe in yourself, sometimes you will still feel like a phony. This is okay, even published writers feel like this sometimes.

Advice 5

Writing is kind of a joke, apparently

Be prepared for people to not take you seriously. For some reason when you tell someone you want to be a writer, it’s like saying you want to be a pop star.

Advice 6

Writing is hard

Seems obvious but this one is so important. Writing a novel is like trying to create one of those elaborate desserts on Masterchief. Ingredients have to be combined skillfully to produce a delicious product. You have to be mindful of texture, flavours, time, temperature, appearance, quality of the produce… It’s a lot and it’s so, so


Books have so many layers that are invisible to most readers and a good writer is one who can hide all the construction that was done and make her story seem very smooth and natural. Again this is


You get it? If it's not hard, you're not doing it right.

Advice 7

The publishing industry moves at a snail’s pace so be patient

Sent a query to a literary agent? Wonderful, now you can wait 3 months for a reply. Everything moves very slowly in the publishing industry. This includes: competitions, short story journals, magazines. It's quite rare for someone to reply to you in a timely manner.

Advice 8

You have to wear many hats

Writers are in the business of selling their stories. Once you realise this, it becomes clear that just writing a book is not enough. You have to market yourself as a writer and grow your platform through social media, getting some short stories published, starting a blog etc. There are many things you can do, but the important thing to remember is to start early.

Advice 9

Be prepared to spend your money

There are many hidden costs when it comes to marketing yourself/getting your manuscript ready. These can include the cost of editing your manuscript, creating a professional website, hosting giveaways etc.

Advice 10

Read as much and as widely as possible

Writing is a craft and like any craft you can only develop your skills by practicing it and also by learning from the experts in the field. You can do this by reading both fiction and technical writing books. So read, read and read.

And that's it for this week! Hope you all enjoyed the post or found it useful. See you all next Tuesday and remember to support my blog by subscribing, sharing and following me on:

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