Beautiful Imagery and our best work

images

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog.

Imagination and Imagery are intimately connected. It’s the power of combining images, transforming them into our particular reality, and even going beyond that.

Writing is constructing images in our heads and in our readers minds.

While building a story we recur to different strategies to visualise how characters, locations, and objects, will appear to our readers.

I do believe that, all that we can see in our minds will translate into a page in the most effective way we can imagine, if we just put the work behind it.

I also believe that usually this happens in ways we can’t perceive objectively. It’s kind of a shadow work that occurs inside our minds, fuelled by all the collected inspirations.

The act of describing what we are envisioning, letting what we absorb come through, will make reading a lively experience.

This means building ideas about how the elements will be, and master its materialisation on the page. Whatever the story, in whichever genre we fancy.

How we find imaginative inspiration?

Some of us, writers and imagery builders of sorts, have a fondness for reading and imagine things in our own way.

Sometimes, this ability gets us to have a book turned into a movie just because the imagery used was totally wrong from what we had envisioned.

Others, find it useful to look at correlated art works and give our imagination a hand at picturing worlds, creatures and even human faces.

There are a few theories about this brain ability of ours, categorising people into types of learners, just by figuring out our abilities to retain information and, therefore, use it in creative ways, accordingly to our main senses of vision, hearing and touching.

I found that, for me a mix and match of all of these, work in different projects and situations. So I learned to use visual aids, and well as hearing and touching.

In some projects I use music. In others, drawings and pictures. With more, or less, emphasis on each aid, according to what I feel is most needed for me to capture the full experience I need.

Because to learn about these characters, and this world, and these objects and locations, I need to attune myself to their particularities. And this is only possible if I keep my sources of inspiration in an expanded mode. Always looking, always alert, always integrating fun little snippets of information that might seem to be just there for the taking. Just so I have some places from which to draw inspiration from.

Where do I find some inspirational imagery?

Just looking at other people’s rendition of something, a picture, a drawing, a digital art work, a description, a capture of some sort of inspirational material, allows me to let me own imagination guide me into my own world building, with all it entails. Browsing through Pinterest, DeviantArt, a Google search on Images tab, can get me some much needed help on figuring out some writerly things.

How do I use it in my writing process?

I use it for inspiration, to build up my mental muscles on the much needed imagery.

Exposing myself to beautifully composed images, to gruesome battle outcomes, to twirls of abstract imagination, will get me content enough to start thinking about my own creative processes in my stories.

Also, I use it for writing exercises.

To have a prompt, and to build upon that little morsel of imagery is a pleasure, and alleviates me from having to start with the dreaded blank page feeling.

Just like painting uses references, the  writing practice also can, and should, do it. Imagery serves us as guides in this unthreaded wordy land.

Is it beneficial to my writings?

Yes. It is indeed. My imagination needs all the aid she can get. My writing efforts benefit from everything I throw at them. All the little unsuspected efforts we can make to help us write more and better are welcome.

If we find a notebook full of clippings is the way to go, we should try it out; or a mood board hanging on the wall; a Pinterest album full of scary pictures; a reference book on imagery; a subscription to a travel magazine; or any other way of collect those images we will be recurring to intentionally, in order to make our writing process smoother and more inspired.

Standing in the shoulders of giants has its downside?

Do not copy. Do not steal. Do not use without permission. Do not go into that unimaginative, hurtful, dishonourable lane.

Reconnect the dots of all you have learned and add to the work already done. Be inventive, resourceful, creative in your own right. You can do the most beautiful, your own, work. And it will feel good to do so.

Be careful of the difference between gathering inspiration, to work out added value, and the already mentioned problem above.

Gather from all types of different sources and think: I am the sieve through which all comes in, and only a small combined part of it mesh and comes out.

Allow myself to be the changing factor, the added value, the combinatory and creative force behind whatever I create.

Will it be easy?

Is anything worthwhile easy? I don’t think so.

Was any of those drawings easy to make? Any of those books we read? Any of those creative breakthroughs?

Easy and Worthwhile are opposites, aren’t they? 

Having these processes available to tap into, allowing new inspiring imagery and information to come through, working out the effective ways they can serve my writing efforts, trying to be receptive to all inspiring tendrils is part of the fun.

All we can do is allow our minds to translate into our work the images we had envisioned. All we must do is ensure that the reading experience will be the best we can make it. And that all these inspirational processes work out for the best in each page we write.

So that our reader truly gets what we were aiming for: the best story possible. 

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

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References:

Considerations about Building Worlds

building worlds

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog.

World Building is hard, fun, messy and an inspiring cluster of moments to be had, while writing a story.

To create a full, well developed, verisimilar picture of a new society, in whichever form and size, means we have to be ready to explore.

And we explore by imagining some complex interactions, rules and possibilities of functions and purposes. We explore by asking ourselves ‘What if?

World Building is also very fun, and we can have a great time imagining and developing some physical, personal and social landscapes in order to make a certain story work.

Building a new world usually means that we want it to be special and unique.

But sometimes, we have all of these ideas, already seen in other books, series and movies, that makes us doubt if we are indeed writing something new or even good enough. Making us doubt of what we intended to create, and getting us not to put enough time in working out the particulars of that special world.

How to come up with remarkable ideas for our World Building?

Learning about other people’s creative processes might give us a glimpse on how their new ideas came to be. It might help us discovering our own process to invent our own strategies to uncover our imaginative process.

I suggest that you watch the documentary ‘Abstract, the Art of Design’ for a great glimpse of other people’s creative processes.

But, more frequently than not, we see their processes as a confluence of different factors, including their own unique reality and life experiences. And, let’s face it, we can’t replicate that. All we can do is live our own life experiences and use them the best we can.

So, looking to other people’s creative processes teach us an invaluable lesson: Use your beliefs, inner thoughts and fears to create our Story Worlds.

There’s a constant need to look around and analyse how we see the world, how we react in certain situations, what we believe in and how those beliefs have changed over time.

There is great potential here. Not just for the things we would like to advocate in behalf of, while writing our stories, but also looking frankly at our hidden agendas, those thoughts we find uneasy and some of them even shameful.

And then, there is fear.

Fear can be our ultimate telltale sign that we need to work on that through a story. Not as a way to deal with it, even if it could be that, but as a spark of inspiration from which to build upon.

When we are writing Fantasy, being in a dystopian novel for example, we may construct a more believable story if we tap into our own experiences and thoughts.

I guess we all have came into contact some pretty messed up world views, peer pressure, or non-sensical beliefs. We might as well put them under a new light and scrutinise if any of those would fit our story just right.

Building a brand new world is, and cannot be in other way, connected to how we experience the reality we live in.

We may set the action in a far away galaxy, in a totally different body, or even in a totally different existential and corporeal plane, but we all start from the same reality in which we live in.

My father used to say that “all the things that exist are from this world. We cannot invent anything that we hadn’t already seen or experienced in this world.

I agree with that. We can only reimagine what we have seen or experienced in some way. And all of it came from this world we live in.

We cannot think outside-the-box, if we have no ideia of what exists beyond it’s confinements. For example in sci-fi stories, assuming there could be something existing outside what we know, and having clear notions that there are rules to the functioning of this world in which we live in, we can only extrapolate into how things could be in other worlds.

Initially, we draw inspiration from the knowable in order to build a new world, somehow inventive, by reapplying the old and conveying things in a new format. And then we go deeper into the rabbit whole, if we can. We conjugate different ideas, crisscrossing from distant experiences and knowledges.

It’s not just having some knowledge but learning to recognise it’s potential and integrate it.

We use what we’ve got, specially if it’s a cross between a chihuahua and a fountain pen, or an ugly feeling and an online game, or chicken legs and a house foundations. Any one of these fortuitous connections may give us that idea that will make our story special.

World Building doesn’t mean just physical location. It envolves people, traditions, cultures, belief systems, interactions, associations, objects, daily tasks… all of the things that we experience in our own existences adapted into this new world that we are creating.

Because a martian would never walk like an earthling, would he? Or an addict would never rationalise some random thought in the same way that someone without that particular addiction would.

There are different knowledges to be pursued and other connections to be made between the simplest thing in that particular world. And our job as storytellers is to make those connections if we can.

So on we go into other worlds in order to discover our own.

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

***

References:

What are you writing next? Who cares?!

who cares

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog!

Maybe we can take all of this (world, life, work) as something dense, difficult, hard to accomplish. Or maybe we can declare fu** ** and say to ourselves ‘Who cares?’

To accept the pressure of having to write the next story is daunting. And not just if you are a known author. If you are a newbie, or a somewhat published author, it’s hard to accept the responsibility of having to write a new work.

To keep it in perspective, and for our mental health well-being, maybe we have to put ourselves in a ‘Who cares?’ mindset.

Instead of writing the next plausible and expected story, how about saying fu** ** and start working in a new genre, or an unsuspected book, or a poetry collection, or a biography.

Because, who cares?

Who is going to come to our home and demand us to write this or that? No one. Who is going to wait impatiently for our second book on a series? If we are lucky, maybe a few. Who cares about which work is out first, as long as we keep making them?

What I know for sure is that, if we pressure ourselves into the point of breaking, we will not write another story ever.

So, who cares?

It’s just me. I care about what I write. I give a fu** about what I’ll be writing next. I suffer the pressure I put on myself in an unimaginable way.

So, I must not care about who cares because I care too much and shouldn’t take it as hard on myself.

Having true fun in creating a story (life or body of work) is the only thing that should matter. To keep myself light and calm so that my imagination can do it’s thing, without added pressure.

Problems? They will always be there and I have a choice. Let them swamp me or tell them ‘Who cares?’

***

These are some words inspired by Neil Gaiman’s interview in the Tim Ferriss Show. Have you seen it? Did it inspire you to do something? Tell us everything.

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

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References: 

Edit the White Room Syndrome in your writing

white room syndrome

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog!

Let’s talk about writing! Let’s talk about the White Room Syndrome.

The White Room Syndrome happens when we are writing a scene and fail to give the details to help the reader imagine what the surroundings of the characters look like.

We start telling the story without giving it a recognisable physical space to live in.

The physical details helps us ground a story. Instead of having the action happening in a nondescript, empty scenery around them, we have the opportunity to bring it to life by sharing a bit of what’s going on outside our characters experience, and how those surroundings may or may not affect them in that scene.

In further analysis, the details we infuse our stories with, may be of specific relevance and representations of themes and points we wish to make with our stories.

We should never neglect the chance to make our narrative more meaningful and choosing some specific details to intertwine in our narrative will achieve this.

Theme and the White Room

It’s not just describing someone’s space, making it speak about the character in itself, or decorating the set so we can feel a more vivid imagery and immersion in the story. It’s using those references to allude to the bigger theme and propelling our story in the way we want it to go.

Not everything has to have a double meaning, or be on theme, but if it’s possible to have double meaning and if it serves a function in the telling of our story, know that she gets better for it.

Describing in the White Room

Description has its objectives and it serves the story, helping to construct a narrative that feels more real. The surroundings can be working with, or against, our characters and thus elevating the story to other levels of artful complexity.

But to capture the scene we have in our head and commit it to paper requires attention to detail. Even if we want our readers to fill in some blanks, and trust me a reader is quite eager to do some of that, we must be careful of leaving too many blanks to fill.

If a reader has difficulty in envision the setting, or if he’s seeing something else entirely from what we thought we had created, then we have incurred in the White Room Syndrome.

But this is only contemplated when we have other people giving feedback or if we can distance ourselves enough from our work to catch these inconsistencies.

Fixing the White Room Syndrome

Answering some simple questions like:

  • What so we want our readers to see in this scene?
  • What are our characters feeling and how can their surroundings reflect that?
  • Which objects or surroundings may enlighten the reader toward the characters inner struggle?
  • Which senses are we using when in that space? (smell, hearing, taste, sight…)

The dangers of Filling the White Room

Be mindful not to over-share information. Those long, boring, uneventful pages of description may be a pain to read and make our readers drop our work as if it burned them. I know I have dropped a few myself.

Over-sharing is a very common mistake and it hurts our story. Nobody wants to sit there and read all about every tiny bric-a-brac in a room… or of a story. Too much detail is as hurtful and no detail at all.

Don’t use random things just because you want to paint a picture so bad that anything would serve this purpose. There are meanings behind most objects, color, ambiences, weather… Don’t use them idly. References will work only if they are respectfully and diligently chosen for some effect.

Avoid the clichés. This is something that is cross-cut in all of it. Avoid a cliché like you would avoid the plague (LOL).

Filling the room with a few well beaten references to some idilic little town, or a creepy old mansion, or using other types of “It was a dark and stormy night” type of descriptions, it’s not very imaginative or advisable… Unless you’re doing an all cliché type of story.

When we need the White Room to do it’s thing

There are certain moments in a narrative that may require a White Room. Like when we want to convey more attention to some character’s internal landscape. To focus on the important is better than to distract our reader with the casual and just there for the word count.

In these moments we might want to shed more light into dialogue, or inner monologue, or sensations, and not so much in what is outside our characters. Describing feelings and thoughts gain the front stage to better tell some part of the story, while their surroundings may fall back.

In conclusion…

The White Room Syndrome is something to tackle on a second draft, when we are on the editing phase of our manuscript. It shouldn’t be considered in the initial stages of creating a writing piece.

Being too worried with this in an earlier stage may damage our writing flow and the ideas we have for the initial draft… which can always be worked on and improved upon, but later in the process.

And it’s one of those things that is here to remind us that art is made of meaningful details added in specific moments, when we are focused on making our writing better and more meaningful.

In our composing efforts we should pay attention to it in order to improve our manuscript. But we shouldn’t let it define us while we are creating a piece.

We have been suffering from the “show don’t tell” and “the cut all the fluff out”, at least I know I have, so it’s normal that we have difficulties in discerning what details to put into our stories. Good editing will solve that.

I’ll leave some outside articles for further reading and reference below.  

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

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References: 

Marketing Writings and work out the Work

marketing writings

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog!

Let’s talk about writing!… and how Marketing our work affects our Writings, and how our Writings affect our Marketing work.

As authors we have a difficult time in cramming all the work we have ongoing into our daily live’s, and still keep ourselves motivated and inspired to write.

At least, this is how I feel.

There are too many things to consider, too many things to learn, too many projects I wish to devote myself to, and I find it hard to put in the good work in all of them at the same time.

We must be a Jack-of-all-trades in order to do a, let’s be truthful, mediocre job at most of the tasks we have going on. We may be savvy in some things but we lack in others… like technical skills, for example.

Or we can spend lot’s of money, that we usually don’t have to begin with, in order to outsource those tasks that can be done by others. And spend more time doing all the research and trial to find some decent professionals to do them for us.

Which would be a nice to have, but it’s not doable for the initial (big) part of the time we take pursuing our dreams.

Marketing is one of those tasks

We find it simple enough to do it ourselves, so we start dabbling in it, and start seeing the immensity of juggling all of it ourselves.

But we need to know a few things first.

Learning the foundations of usable images, formatting, creating online content, sharing throughout platforms, helpful apps and gadgets, and all sorts of things that are needed, just to be able to do a somewhat decent job.

Decent, but only after a few years of a learning curve, or a steep few months if we have the strength for it.

I know this reality. I have been dancing to this tune for fifteen or more years.

Marketing is Images

First it was the images issue. All images had author rights associated and this implies having another cost. While starting a blog as a marketing tool, we have to produce content always accompanied by good, relevant, beautiful images. So I needed the images and had a passion for creating them. Uniting both I created my own images library.

So I worked my way into creating my own visual content, including all the images for each blog post.

Marketing is Brand

Also on the brand, constructing it made me meddle with logos and brand images. I got to learn how to develop the online presence imagery that I use, and spruce up when needed.

A few years ago, I discovered a new online design tool (canva.com) which gave me a lot more leverage to work on my visual content. I have learn a bit of Photoshop, back in the day, but I have never mastered anything but the strict basics of it. Also Gimp wasn’t friendly enough for me.

With Canva I got to experiment a thousand ways to create content and still use it daily.

At the same time, I had concerns about formatting the whole thing, about headlines creation, about visual presentation, tags, niche audience, and so much more. And I’m kind of allergic to SEO! Not that I don’t use it. I try to.

Marketing is Social Media

It has been a slow, but very rewarding, struggle managing all the need to know’s about the marketing experience connected to my blogs and online presence. I have been experimenting different social media tools and online presences and it requires focus and effort.

Marketing is Effective Writing

Permanently underlying all of this is the need to write good articles.

Marketing is supposed to be an accessory to our writing. It is not. It’s a full, complex, independent area of knowledge. And learn to write copy is hard work.

Writing blog posts, articles of sorts, is another type of writing that needed to be studied, and enhanced with practice. Even blog titles have a spin to it that needs to be learned.

As for my writing articles practice, I will not call them great content because until this day, my blogues remain the desired blog experience, not quite Content, focusing on sharing my experience through the meanderings of the writing dream, not the ‘build a business type of blog‘. And I do enjoy to write for my blogs. 

Yes, I would like to have some revenue, sustaining my twenty year efforts and allowing myself to continue doing this thing I love the most: writing on its different formats.

I find that I like to put in the work but lack in other aspects.

After all, the writing dream does come with major costs associated, but I’m always struggling with how real my content is, opposed to the ‘How to write a best-seller in two days’ mentality.

And these views of the matter don’t produce good marketing content, do they? Trying to inspire others to pursue their dreams is not the same thing as promising them magical improvements by reading a single blog post.

A ‘write better’ article, a ‘devote more time to your writing’ or a ‘read from better sources’ aren’t appealing. People like to have it simple, not too much work, without too much pain. And we all know how that saying goes… 

Marketing is Blogging

Since my first days blogging, I wanted a platform for my voice, my writing voice, and the cheap-online-business model will never do it for me. Blogging is supposed to add value, inspiring others to pursue their creative callings, not take it away. Not frustrating readers when the promise on life changing magic doesn’t appear.

All I ever wanted was to add value. To help someone in the pursue of their dreams, if possible.

We can teach how to put in the time to do better, but we cannot make it magically better just by existing. You have to put in the time and effort to do it.

Just like writing fiction, or non-fiction, or in any any form or genre that we may devote ourselves into. For example, writing a book is long, hard work. And also, very fun work. If we let it be so.

Marketing is Exposure

With all of this in mind, Marketing and how to grow the exposure to what I write, is very relevant.

Choosing my platforms, my public voice, working on my content, devoting myself to my writing practices, and trying to see a bit further away than today’s viewpoint, are constant efforts.

[So I resent it immensely when the players change the game, no warnings offered, in what seems to serve only big commercial self-interests. Yes, things change, tools evolve, social media is the golden egg chicken which needs to prevail through time… and it needs to evolve to prevail. But it has evolved poorly.

And, I know that all of the things we use freely aren’t free. I am the commodity, the product, the final endgame for them is to make money out of my needs.

We need it to reach other people that maybe would like to see what we have to offer. But no ‘buying space‘ = noalgorythming‘. But I’m digressing here…]

Marketing our work, on top of all the Real Work we have to put in to create our Life’s Work, is a conundrum of sorts.

No one will do it better than ourselves. Nobody knows our book better. Nobody knows our message better. Nobody knows what we like better.

Marketing is Connection

Marketing end’s up being just me and my big dream, fighting to get it to other people, so they can find some value and maybe inspire them to pursue their dream.

Not just sharing for vanity, but always searching to add something that others can use in their creative pursuits. Even if it doesn’t seem obvious.

Not just creating different iterations of the same well studied booklet, but offering a personal view. Not just copying the trendy stuff but making our own possibilities of trendy.

Truly knowing what we want to write about, and how to go about it, is a good strategy for finding a Marketing that works for our projects… to find a Marketing that works for our Work.

We may find the commercial side of things is the way to go but we need to have the skills for it. Or develop them.

It’s like learning to walk again. We will get up and fall down. We will take a step forward and stumble. We will manage to stay upright a few more moments at a time. And even after we have learned to walk, we need to find our balance and to avoid the slippery patches, and not run ourselves into walls and street posts.

Marketing is Learning

Marketing is showing how to register all of that process, how to paint our travelling experience in a captivating way, how to make others come together in communities of sorts.

It’s a hard and fun job. Even if accumulating with all sorts of other tasks. Like writing our books.

Quick question: How can we marketing what doesn’t exist yet?

See?! Another conundrum of sorts…

What’s your marketing strategy? How do you deal with the cheap feeling of pushing your work? How do you balance time for all of the works you have to do?

Leave the comments below. We would like to talk about this more.

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

***

Reading for the Writer in you

reading for the writer in you

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog so…

Let’s talk about writing!

Today, I want to talk a bit about the importance of Reading to our Writing practices. Not just about what we read or how much, but also the variety we incorporate.

I figure this is not a strange assumption to make, that reading is truly important for our writing practices. After all, Writers are Readers and there’s no other way to go about it.

Reading helps us learn the craft, discover new and important themes, refine our own writer voice, and simply enjoy the fruits of our labor, even if made by someone else.

But what if we can’t read for a while?

Sometimes, we get ourselves into some deep holes, some occurrences to which we call reading slumps, the reader counterpart of writer’s block, forgetting the real pleasure we have while absorbing a good immersive story.

Just like when we forget the real pleasure of writing our own imagined story.

Sometimes, we try to erase the appreciation we have for these activities and instead, we start listening to what we should be doing, or enjoying, instead of what we do love doing and truly enjoy. 

Not just reading serious books is Reading, nor just writing literary fiction is Writing.

But we tend to forget this while pursuing the genres that make us feel more vibrantly alive in our literary practices.

I believe our reading habits are made not just of books, nor certain genres.

We have plenty of material around that adds up to our love for reading. Like magazines, blogs, essays, letters, manga… Our readings are, and should be, made of multiple and different materials, providing us with a wellspring of ideas difficult to match by the sheer diversity of it.

I find that reading different book genres has the same benefits. Having access to other types of literary texts will put us in contact with themes, and ideas, which would not enter our minds if we just sticked with the genre we like to read the most… Or the genre we think we should be reading.

Diversity helps us forge a clear perspective on different subjects and expands our bandwidth so we can embrace growth in our practices.

Keeping this in mind was what got me to contemplate a new reading challenge for this year.

This week I’m organising my readings for 2023, but I’ll not be giving you too many details, because I’ll be talking about it soon enough. I’ve reimagined a reading challenge, more fitted to my current situation, and reading needs, and I am fully devoted to make it work.

This challenge has already brought its fruits:

First, I have a problem! Yep. It’s official. I have made myself take a real, long look at my reading habits, and how I motivate myself to reading, and I found I have a flickering motivation. 

Second, it allowed me to go in search of all the books I own, or at least the majority of them, and have a notion of how I have been making choices just by not choosing. And not choosing is a bad thing, isn’t it?

Third, I’m feeling more energised by the attempts of organising my readings. Which already had made me do things I have been postponing for ages, like creating a sheet for all of my books, and setting a new more objective goal for this year, and not just the amount of readings I’ll be doing.

Keeping my readings organised helps me getting my head clear about what I want to read, and what I need to read, and what would be beneficial if I read.

And I guess that’s why I have not gone about it this way… too much pressure and constraints.

Also, reading for research must have a specific time bound, while reading for mere pleasure has other restraints. And these are important notions to have. Adding to our reading materials must come with a time stamp on it (so you don’t end up like me, as you’ll see soon enough).

And, never forgetting that we should be careful of what we are reading while we are working on some of our writing projects, lest we confuse our writing voice. Creativity fuels herself with all it gathers around her (us). We must be careful so it doesn’t take over while we are writing in our own voice.

I find that keeping our readings more directional towards the kind of writer we want to be is an effort that has a ton of value.

But I also believe that we should expose ourselves to the most diverse lot we can arrange. This feeds our imagination and helps create those worlds we wish to live in or just write about.

Balance is key. And unbalanced is the creative spirit. Or at least is what it seems sometimes… the constant duality of life, isn’t it?

So, the three ideas I wish you would keep in mind:

  • Reading is instrumental to Writing.
  • Choosing what to read is important.
  • Reading diversity is what makes us versatile.

What do you think about this?

Thanks for being here and for being willing to talk about writing!

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

***

My favorite writing-craft books

favorite books

Hello all! Welcome back to this blog.

This week is the final stretch before Christmas, as is celebrated by yours truly.

I have been on my usual predicaments, writing and reading, and more writing, and editing, but I’ve decided to share with you some of my favorite writing-craft books.

So, if you are thinking about giving a book to your favorite author/reader, feel free to pick one, or several, of these books. I’ll share a bit of my opinion about them, of course…

1. ‘Bird by Bird’ by Anne Lamott

I wish I could just share the impact of this book with you. This is a book for writer’s and for writer’s friends and family. It helps others understand a bit of what ails us.

Written by Anne Lamott, which I am a fan, and have read most of her other books also, never feeling disappointed by any of those. But I do feel this ‘Bird by Bird’ had made a great impact in me and in my writing.

If you like writerly themes, if you have an aspiring author in your life, if you want to gift someone with a great book about the writing craft, this is the book for you.

2. ‘The Artist’s Way’ by Julia Cameron

Is it a book? Is it a course? Is it guidance from above? All of those. I found this book in a very tricky phase of my life.

I was going through some life altering changes, and doubting myself, and my writing efforts. This book got me through a lot of doubts. It helped me get in line with my program and devote myself to my writing efforts, respecting myself as a creative person.

This is a book for people who lost or are losing hope in their creativity. I can’t recommend it enough.

3. ‘Writing Fiction for Dummies’ by Randy Ingermanson and Peter Economy

What can I say? Everybody is a dummy before learning to be something else.

This book has so many basics about writing and creating our stories, and methods, and writing techniques, and themes, and loads of other important information that is hard to list them all. I found this book very enlightening and go back to it repeatedly.

If you want to know some basics of the writing craft this is the book for you.

4. ‘The Faith of a Writer: Life, Craft, Art’ by Joyce Carol Oates

Having the undiluted view of a writer about her craft, and how it impacts life, it’s a priceless gift.

Through this book we get to learn how struggles make our path in writing a true one. Oates guides us through our most recurrent themes, showing us that it’s our faith and our devotion to reading and learning that get us through the difficult patches.

It’s a must read.

5. ‘Letters to a Young Writer’ by Rainer Maria Rilke

To have a teacher as Rilke telling us about devotion to our writing craft, in this particular case directed towards a young wanna be poet, is touching.

Life, writing, devotion, work, all are themes for Rilke to discourse upon, and for us to accept the vision of a very wise man.

You’ll find nuggets of wisdom that will make ou wonder how this could be…

6. ‘Why I write’ by George Orwell

A book made of several essays but it’s this ‘Why I Write’ that allows us to discern how Orwell’s thought about the writing craft.

It’s a very enlightening essay, full of technical questions and subsequent answers. The big premise of them all being inserted by the list of reasons that get someone to became a writer.

It’s a must read essay about the writing life and craft.

7. ‘How to read Literature like a Professor’ by Thomas C. Foster

Oh! This was a fun book to read. As a true Professor, Foster knows how to captivate his audience and make us see what might have been lost because of sheer boredom.

His way of handling the writing subjects, the meanings behind techniques and making us look for just good, unbiased, writing, is a gift for all that get to read this title.

I do recommend it if you are an aspiring author. It made a huge impact in me.

8. ‘Turning Pro’ by Steven Pressfield

Turning Pro is the nudge we all need to get in touch with our life’s program. Pressfield writes about his life and his experience in becoming a well-known writer.

There are some powerful lessons inside this book. No sugarcoating the thing, no handling with care, no lies about what we need to accept in our live’s if we want to pursue the writing craft.

It’s an eye opener of sorts. I do recommend it most vividly.

9. ‘Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear’ by Elizabeth Gilbert

This is road trip through all of our most ingrained fears and tremors about the writing life. Always reaching for a positive and transformative point of view on all matters, Gilbert help us having a new perspective of the writer’s life choices.

There are myths in here being debunked with the personal flair of this writer.

It’s a fun and helpful book if you are an aspiring writer.

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I hope you found these suggestions inspiring. I’m always on the look out for other favorites so, let me know if you have one to suggest.

Let me know if you read any of these and your opinion about them. And, please feel free to suggest a few of your favorite books on the writing-craft.

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Bye and Keep writing! ✍🏼

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