As winner of an Honorable Mention in Bethlehem Writer's 2014 Short Fiction Contest I was asked to submit, along with a short bio, my top ten list. After banging
photo courtesy of Wanna Commons Jenny Kaczorowski
1. These words by Ernest Hemingway have appeared on my blog before, but they remind me writing is no easy task and not to take it too seriously.
“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at the typewriter and bleed.”
2. When I’m experiencing writer’s block Barbara Sher’s words often help.
“You don’t need endless time and perfect conditions. Do it now. Do it today. Do it for twenty minutes and watch your heart start beating.”
3. When I’m facing a big project like an 80,000 word novel Mark Twain’s words fill me with hope.
“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret to getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and ten starting on the first one.”
4. My first drafts are often a messy pile of dog poop and C. J. Cherryh words give me permission to keep going.
“It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly.
5. I love writing short stories, but they are not easy as Henry David Thoreau reminds me.
“Not that the story need be long, but it will take a long while to make it short.”
6. I am not a big planner, outliner, or plotter and usually write by the seat of my pants. E. L. Doctorow’s words remind me I don’t have to know everything about the plot before I sit down to write.
“Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”
7. Edgar Rice Burroughs words remind me to just keep writing, every day, lots of stories.
“If you write one story, it may be bad; if you write a hundred, you have the odds in your favor.”
8. Revising can be my best friend or my worst enemy, but Oscar Wilde’s words remind me I’m not alone.
“This morning I took out a comma and this afternoon I put it back again.”
9. There are many, many, many rules for writing well, but I like Robert Silverberg’s best.
“Three Rules for Literary Success: 1. Read a lot. 2. Write a lot. 3. Read a lot more, write a lot more.”
10. And because I love Ernest Hemingway and a his hits of humor. . .
“There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it’s like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.”
As always feel free to comment or add inspiring words of wisdom, your own or another author's.