Six Signs You're Bound to See On The Fiction Writer's Journey!
1. Say “Yes, I am a fiction writer!” No matter what level of writer you are, it’s wonderful to revel in being a fiction writer, in our fantastic imagination and love of creativity. A daily dose of resounding “Yes, I am a fiction writer!” builds up your writer’s muscle and gives you strength to stand strong against your Inner Critic.
2. Carry your writer’s tool bag with you at all times. You’ll gather more tools as you walk the journey. For starters, add imagination, a fascination with the human condition, a willingness to take risks and a grounding in fiction writer’s techniques. The latter includes Emily’s Five Ingredients of the Scene: point of view, dialogue, dramatic tension, mood and flashback.
3. What not to carry in your writer’s tool box: an outline of your story (before you’ve even begun to write), and the assumption (false) that you have control over the story you will tell and the characters who will show up. Give up control and amazement follows! Scary, huh?
4. Your feelings about your writing, good or bad, are mercurial: Everyone experiences the journey differently — and differently at different times. When you’re confident in where you’re going with your characters and story, the path appears sunny and clear. When you’re uncertain of your story or your own self-worth, when you’re suffering from writer’s block, the path appears dark and oppressive. Feelings, good or bad, pass. The more aware of this you become, the more you will enjoy the journey.
5. Create a writing schedule at which you can succeed. It doesn’t make you a better writer to say you’re going to write every day for two hours when you don’t have the time or the capacity to write for more than a half an hour twice a week. Setting a reasonable schedule and sticking to it will make you a better writer.
6. You don’t have to be sitting at your computer to be on the journey. Whenever you let your imagination carry you back to your characters and stories, whenever you delight in your writing, and whenever you are lost in flights of fancy, you are on The Fiction Writer’s Journey!