Exercise the writing muscle every day, even if it is only a letter, notes, a title list, a character sketch, a journal entry. Writers are like dancers, like athletes. Without that exercise, the muscles seize up.
All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary—it’s just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences.
Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.
-Orson Scott Card
First, you get the idea. It may germinate for a long time or it just pops into your head. And then you work out a structure. And when you feel confident enough, you start to write. And you have to allow yourself the liberty of writing poorly. You have to get the bulk of it done, and then you start to refine it. You have to put down less than marvelous material just to keep going to whatever you think the end is going to be—which may be something else altogether by the time you get there.
All the information you need can be given in dialogue.
No internet. No emails. No camera or pictures. No color screen. You can write. That’s all. Nothing else. It runs on two AAA batteries (rechargeable) for about 15 – 20 hours. You can change the size of the font and invert the colors. Really, that’s about it. Oh, and there is a calendar, but I never use it. It can’t do half of the things that PDA’s could a decade ago, but it was an incredibly worthwhile investment for this writer. I had thought about buying a Macbook Air, but I already have an iMac and really have no need for another computer. Nor did I want all the distractions that would come with writing a first draft on a laptop. I wanted pared down action. And the DM20 is my focus machine.
If science fiction is the mythology of modern technology, then its myth is tragic.
-Ursula K. Le Guin
Great is the art of beginning, but greater is the art of ending.
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
In general…there’s no point in writing hopeless novels. We all know we’re going to die; what’s important is the kind of men and women we are in the face of this.
Fiction is about stuff that’s screwed up.