Over three years ago I decided to finally give writing a serious go. I always wrote stories and abandoned about twelve novel projects. I never knew what I was doing. Until I decided to seriously study the craft.
I’ve followed many online (creative) writing courses, read thousands of articles, read a couple of dozen books, and most importantly: I wrote.
People often ask me, which books on writing are a MUST read? Out of everything I read, the following five books will give you that head start you need.
These books improved my craft substantially. The topics range greatly, from…
Dan Brown’s thrillers are controversial, addictive, sell millions of copies, are turned into blockbuster films starring Tom Hanks, and are loved by many. He is one of the world’s most successful thriller writers.
I’ve never written a thriller before, but I have followed Brown’s Masterclass years ago (which I highly recommend). I found that the lessons for thriller writing are universal and can be applied to any type of writing.
I’ve used some of his tips in writing short stories and in the current book I’m working on. …
He glanced over to the dance floor to try and catch a glimpse of her. All of his fellow students were enjoying themselves dancing. It was the Christmas formal. At last, he found her. Her head tilted back in laughter. She was dancing with Zach. His best friend. Or was he? Perhaps he only befriended Zach to be near her.
Suddenly, she caught his eye and smiled at him. His stomach turned. That smile could wipe away all his sorrows and fears. For a brief moment, he didn’t feel alone in this world.
She untied her hands from Zach’s and…
Our work is tied to our identity like an umbilical cord. When we introduce ourselves in any setting, it’s 90% likely that the second question you get is: ‘What do you do?’. It makes it easy to categorize one another. Yet does your work say who you are?
Your job is a key pillar of what forms your identity. We spend 90,000 hours of our life working! You work as much as you sleep, so are you spending your waking hours on something that is part of you? Something that you like doing? …
If you are writing a non-fiction book, you must write a book proposal to pitch to agents and publishers. You don’t need a complete manuscript as long as you’re able to intrigue your reader and sell your story.
Below you’ll find all the requirements for a solid book proposal. Using examples from my last book proposal, I will explain the steps that eventually resulted in a publishing deal.
Remember, these are my suggestions, which have worked for me. Check the requirements of the individuals you want to approach with your book proposal, such as agents and publishers. They might require…
Every aspiring author’s dream is to get a publishing deal and share their story with the world. If it were easy, everyone would do it. It’s the struggle that’s part of the payoff when you finally pull it off.
There is no one-stop way to get a publishing deal. At least not if you want to go with traditional publishing. If you self-publish, the Amazon Kindle store is probably the best way to go.
For the book I’m working on, that was not the road I wanted to take. I wanted a real publisher with an editor and everything. Someone…
Haruki Murakami’s routine is one to envy, but it requires discipline. He wakes up before 5 a.m. and writes first thing. In the morning, his focus is at its peak, a moment when he can work on the most essential work of the day, which is usually writing a novel.
Then he works out. His discipline is reflected in his running routine. He aims to run every day or at least six days a week. That is a commitment. When he gets back home, he focuses on work that’s doesn’t require much concentration. He concludes the day by relaxing, reading…
Submitting your short story to publications is still the best way to (start) building your writing career. There are hundreds of journals in the US alone.
Authors like Bukowski and Stephen King started their careers getting their short stories published in magazines like Esquire or Playboy. Their work was noticed and they got the traction they needed to land publishing deals for their future work.
The question is: what is the best way to submit your short story to journals? Finding the right journal for your work is time-consuming, especially if you have no clue about the publication landscape.
There are countless ways to approach short story writing. The challenge is mainly to finish one that’s engaging, authentically you, well-structured, and inhabited by great characters.
The following ten steps will help you tackle these challenges and publish a well-written gem of a story.
Every author has a style. How that style comes across depends on the choices you make, your experiences, and your influences. Don’t worry too much about finding your writing voice yet, it’s going to be an amalgamation of the things you’ve read and what appeals to you in stories.
My style comes from studying the craft…
Every once in a while you stumble upon a book that is more than a gem of a read. It’s a compass for life, a roadmap to happiness. A book that decreases anxiety and silences other inner demons. A book you wish everyone would read. Perhaps that’s why Tim Ferriss has recommended the book so many times on his podcast. Past summer I finally read it and there’s so much wisdom in it I might as well have copied the entire book here, but you should read it and experience it for yourself instead.