Tuesday, August 25, 2009

First entry (again)

Seriously, I'm a terrible blogger. My skill at organizing my ideas into eloquent prose deserts me when it come to creating thought-provoking commentary. I wander away and forget I have a blog, sometimes for years.

My sole purpose for torturing myself in this way is to keep myself focussed on the writing life and touch base with my faithful readers. To atone for inflicting my ramblings upon them, I will share some of my author adventures and writing tips that I often present and gather at readings and workshops.

To begin, a few highlights of advice for writers presented by the guest authors at the previous weekend's Con-Version 25 which I attended in Calgary with my friend Bridget. SF and fantasy authors Terry Brooks, Tanya Huff, Dave Duncan, and Robert J. Sawyer were among the guest speakers.
  • When critiquing another's work be truthful but helpful. Be specific. An example of unhelpful criticism: "I don't like this part."
  • Find a niche in the market and try to tie it into a current trend.
  • Write in a comfortable chair.
  • Never miss deadlines.
  • Get onto listservs and forums related to the subject you're researching.
  • Less is more; don't include too much description (characters, settings, weather, etc.) Let your readers engage their imaginations.
  • How you write is more important than what you write. It's your unique voice that sells the story, not the story itself.
  • Don't write what you know; write what you think is cool.

Photos: Terry Brooks and Glenda; Glenda with Tanya Huff and my friend Bridget

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