FOUR DOZEN ROSES—FOR WRITERS—I
February (and the last week of January) is a season that is full of family birthdays for me. My Mother’s birthday started the celebrations rolling and she loved roses. When someone admired her centerpiece vase full of red, yellow and white roses, she was always pleased. However if anyone happened to mention that “a rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” she would gracefully argue the point. Often she took several roses from the vase and requested that each rose be smelled individually so that her visitor would realize the subtle differences. There was even one variety of rose (which I can’t seem to recall at the moment) that had no scent at all, yet was most exquisite. In my Mother’s world, each individual rose—no matter which bush it came from—was uniquely beautiful and brought joy into our home.
So it is with each individual writer who writes with Passion and Purpose—which is exactly what I’m hoping you are doing. In the spirit of beautiful roses and beautiful writing you’ll find my first dozen roses for you below—things to consider as you build your writing career!
- READ a LOT of books in the genre you’re writing in! When you find something in one of those books that you don’t like about it—make a note about it—so you can avoid doing the same thing in your book.
- READ the occasional book that connects with your writing/story interests, but is from a different genre.
- Set yourself up for SUCCESS! Decide what time of day is the best for your creative mind to kick in and flow. Then set your writing schedule accordingly. This could be an everyday schedule, a 5-days-a-week schedule, 3-days a week. Being aware of the needs your life demands of you will (yes, WILL) give you the time you need to write.
- Then—if your schedule tells you it’s time to be writing—go write! Don’t allow moods the power to remove a day of writing.
- Do your best to relax while writing. If you’re a spiritual person, mediate or pray before you begin—or simply practice some deep breathing (to bring oxygen to your brain)—and begin.
- Prepare yourself to work hard. Writing and becoming a published author is not an easy career.
- Always, ALWAYS, back up your files on a disc and/or memory stick.
- Think about your audience. Who is that one person who will understand your story because they’ve lived it? Or because they’re dreaming about living it? IF you don’t know who this person is you’ll run the risk of boring them to sleep.
- Consider making your first notes (files) by hand. Those wonderful legal-pads of lined yellow paper are excellent tools and as you type them into a computer file the creative embellishments will flow with ease.
- Begin to write one-liners about the theme of your story(s). What words express this theme? Could you write an essay about the essence of it?
- Develop your characters TO THE MAX. Let them tell you who they are and what makes them This means ALL of your characters. IF you bring a character on stage you must know at least the basics about them.
- Develop the setting (environment) where your characters live. Use LOTS of descriptive words and detail as you break-out each specific setting in relation to each character’s timeline.
Next week: The second dozen!⚓︎
ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene has been writing something since before kindergarten days and continues to love the process. Through her small business—DOYLE WRITING SERVICES—she brings more than 40 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their projects. This is a nice fit as she develops these blogs for Outskirts Press (OP) a leading self-publisher, and occasionally accepts a ghostwriting project from one of their clients. Her recent book release (with OP) titled FIREPROOF PROVERBS, A Writer’s Study of Words, is already receiving excellent reviews including several professional writer’s endorsements given on the book’s back cover.
Royalene’s writing experience grew through a wide variety of positions from Office Manager and Administrative Assistant to Teacher of Literature and Advanced Writing courses and editor/writer for an International Christian ministry. Her willingness to listen to struggling authors, learn their goals and expectations and discern their writing voice has brought many manuscripts into the published books arena.