Monday, February 21, 2011

Best and Worst Advice - LTUE Report, Part I

I attended my first LTUE symposium this past weekend. I was pleased with the offerings there. I took my Dana with me and took copious notes. Copious.

So, here's part one of a report of the first workshop I attended,"Best and Worst Writing Advice." This was a panel discussion. On the panel were: Anna del C Dye, Mette Ivie Harrison, James Dashner, Tyler Whitesides and Frank L. Cole.

James dashner said that some of the worst writing advice he'd received was to set a goal each day for the number of pages you want to write. He said what worked better for him was a time goal, such as: "I will write for 3 hours/day."

Frank Cole said that the best advice he's received is not to stop writing when you have something ready to submit. He said we should continue writing and not pin all our hopes on one greatest-of-all-time book. He went on to say that our first book is usually not going to be our best work, as we get better as we progress. Publishers often will ask what else you have that they can look at.

Tyler Whitesides said the best advice he's been given is to read, read, read, in the same genre that you write. He also said not to be afraid to write what's already been tried because your idea will be original. He said as we read ideas will come to help overcome obstacles in our writing. He said to try a new genre if what we're working on isn't working.

Mette Ivie Harrison pointed out that what is good advice for one person may be bad advice for another. Bad advice for her was to create an outline, but it does work for many other authors.

Anna del C Dye said that for her some bad advice was to finish one book and try to place it somewhere. She said that for her, writing other books before sending any of them out was the right answer. She is self published and has spent so much time promoting her book after it was publish that she doesn't have a lot of time for writing.

For Next Week: Part II, the panelists answer the question, "Who helped you as a writer in your journey to publish and how?"


Ann Best said...

Good information. What works for one might not work for someone else. Or something might work for a particular piece and not for another. Re: self-publishing requires self-promotion. So does it if you've been accepted with a small press!

And yes, reading is crucial--in your genre especially, but any reading. Read and read.

Canda said...

It's really true that you have to find the best way to write for YOU. Everyone can tell you how they do it (outline, freewrite or something in between) but you have to fine the way that keeps you in the chair.

Karen Dupaix said...

Yes, I don't remember if it was this workshop or another one, but an author said that outlining/not outlining worked differently for different books. Sometimes she outlines, sometimes she doesn't.

Taffy said...

Thanks for the notes. I didn't get to that panel.

kbrebes said...

Great! Thanks!

Rachelle said...

Thanks for sharing these great tips! It is so important to find out what works for each of us as individual writers and then go for it.

Angie said...

Thanks for sharing that. I didn't make it to that panel. That's definitely some good advice.