I am not a professional writer; though, that’s one thing I seem to do better than I do anything else. I even published a novel and am working on another one. I do have some insights on various things. I’ve had people ask me about the best advice for an up and coming author, and I have two tips that I often give.
Tip number one is to read. It doesn’t really matter whether it’s fiction or non-fiction. It doesn’t matter whether it is comedy, science fiction, fantasy, or something else. It is important to spend copious amounts of time reading, and reading, and then reading some more. The purpose is to expand your knowledge of language, word usage, and history and geographical information and anything that could feed your knowledge and support your writing. This is especially true if you want to write fiction. Look at the writings of John Grisham. Even though much of his stories center on the legal system – and he does a fine job detailing that industry – he also includes stories detailing communities and sub communities of cities such as New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. He paints a picture so clear that readers will almost feel as if they’re right there. Yeah, I’m sure he’s probably been to those cities many times. But if he hasn’t, he could paint just as clear a picture and developing his knowledge just from reading. The more you read, the more educated and knowledgeable you will become. So, keep on reading.
The second tip, which is equally as important as the first, is to write. You can get a pen a paper and write the old fashioned way, or you can do it via a computer or use an e-journal. It doesn’t matter, as long as you’re writing. It’s important to write every day, without fail. Even if you can’t write in your journal every day, write any way whether it’s on a piece of paper, the back of a napkin, or on note cards. You can transfer it to your official journal later. Just write. Write. Write.
And even if you aren’t an inspiring author, reading and writing are great habits to do every day. That helps to increase your skill level and if nothing else it will help improve your vocabulary. So, what are you waiting for? Hop to it.