Just in case you end up wondering, GirlWhoWrites did not send us a cupcake with this submission. —SparkNotes editors
I love writing fiction, and I'm pretty sure other Sparklers do, too. But younger Sparklers or those who've never tried to write fiction might feel too intimidated to start. Here are my six tips for brand new fiction writers:
1) Learn how to type. Modern novels aren't written by pecking at the keyboard with two fingers. You’ll find that your writing will come easier if it isn’t so cumbersome to get your thoughts down on paper.
2) Be open to inspiration. A billion dollar idea could come to you while you are shower or scraping dog poo off your brand-new sneakers. Alternatively, you might get that spark of creativity while you are dog-napping the annoying Yorkie on my street. Just sayin’.
3) READ READ READ! Read what you like. And yes, that includes SparkNotes. Just read A.M.A.P. (“As Much As Possible.”) But you knew that, right?
4) Be a total and utter suck-up to your teacher/editor. Teachers/editors like compliments and cupcakes. Really, they do! (Ed note: Really, we do.)
5) Examine. Take your favorite pieces of writing and examine them closely. Ask yourself, “Just what did this guy do that managed to hold my attention while I could have been ridding the world of annoying Yorkies, or filling it with cupcakes?” Find what your favorite authors do right (a.k.a. what you love about them, what makes you want to read more) and follow their lead. For example, I love—and I mean love—James Patterson novels. (Maximum Ride, anyone?) After reading his books many times over, I realized that I like fast-paced stories about funny, smart-alecky kids with a romantic twist!
6) Actually write. A lot of people aspire to be writers. You may talk the talk, but ya gotta walk the walk, sweetheart. That means instead of going to cheerleading practice, you need to be sitting in front of the computer typing. This may seem depressing, but when you think about where you'll get after a few years of practice—on your way to a creative writing program at a great college—you'll feel a lot better.
What sacrifices do you have to make to find time to write?
Related Post: How to Write Fiction: 5 Key Rules
Wanna write for SparkLife? Send your submission and nickname to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.