Tips to Becoming a Better Writer

As a writer I am constantly researching ways to become better at writing. I have discovered so many tips and a lot of advice. It is a bit overwhelming at times. I’ve come up with a list of tips that I have found help me. These tips are not just for professional writing, they also work when writing a paper or just writing for yourself in general.

  1. Read: reading books by good writers is essential. You get a taste of different styles. Some you may find are close to your own style of writing. It’s important to keep your imagination flowing not just with your own creative ideas but by others as well.

  2. Get an editor: this doesn’t have to be a professional person. Peer editing is important to the writing process. Find someone you trust to critique and give feedback to your writing. It’s always nice to have a second set of eyes.

  3. Capture ideas: my favorite is to evesdrop on conversations. Dialogue is a big part of novel writing. Hearing it naturally done will help. You can also get ideas for creative projects by situations you see.

  4. Write everyday: this ties into another tip that practice makes perfect. Some authors admit to carrying a notebook with them everywhere they go so they can write when inspiration hits them. You don’t, however, need to write a book. You can use a journal to jot down ideas or thoughts. A professor of mine admitted to taking part in a 10 minute mind dump everyday. He said that some of his entries didn’t make sense but that’s why it’s important.  You just write down anything and everything that comes to you.

  5. Get inspired: to do this, you need to put in the effort. Sit down with a blank page, go for a hike, watch movies, read. Anything to get the creative juices flowing.

  6. Find and use resources: we all have handy dandy phones that connect us directly to the internet. That is one of the most powerful resources at our fingertips. Other resources that are sometimes forgotten are bookstores or libraries. I pretty much live at my local library when inspiration hits me so I can do research and get quiet time.

I hope these tips help no matter what writing you find yourself doing. It’s important to find what works best for you.

My First Book Club Meeting

Today I took part in an adult book club meeting. I am a huge bookworm but I have never been part of a book club. As part of my New Years resolution, I decided to give it a try. I figured if I didn’t like it then I wouldn’t go back and if I did then I could continue. Right at this morning, I have not decided if I liked it or not.

The book we had to read for it was fantastic and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. The women who were part of the book club are very nice and insightful. A down side is that I am the youngest person there. Everyone else is much older. I have no problem with age and enjoyed discussing this book with these women. But, I think it would have been nice to have at least one more person who was closer in age. I did enjoy all the different opinions. We each took something from the book that related to our personal lives and they weren’t the same at all.

I decided to give it another shot to see if I can make a decision. I don’t really have any reason not to like it. I just don’t know if discussing what I read is my thing. I’ve always been an independent reader, but it is nice to have other women to talk to and learn about.

If it hadn’t been for my resolution to get out of my shell and try something new, I probably wouldn’t have signed up. I will keep you all informed on my take of the next meeting.

What are your feelings on book clubs or any group type hobbies?

Doing My Research

I recently finished an amazing book called Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate. This is not a book review post, but I will take a moment to praise the author on her writing style. She did such a great job keeping the reader invested. I couldn’t put the book down. It’s a wonderful book for anyone who enjoys reading about true life events. The story line of the book is fictional, but the basis of the idea of the book is a true event.

When I read a book that says it is based on true events, I like to research the topic just to be sure. For this book, the research I have been doing is based on the Tennessee Children’s Home Society Scandal. This is such a sad and tragic event but fascinating at the same time. I feel so heartbroken for the children and families that were torn apart. I mourn the children who lost their lives to this scandal. Having children of my own, this hits extremely close to home.

I hope my fellow bookworms give this book a read. It is a fantastic book. I look forward to learning more about this scandal and reading more from this author as well.

For change or against it.

I was having a conversation with my grandfather whom I am quite close with. I mentioned my New Years resolutions about wanting to get out of my little bubble and change my life a bit. He’s quite old fashioned and is a firm believer that if something isn’t broken why fix it. He’s very stuck on his routines and doesn’t like things to be any different than they are.

I feel that change is good if it is going to improve things. I think putting myself out there to be challenges and experience new adventures and try new things is a good thing to do. He disagrees. While I appreciate his honestly and his opinions, I did explain that I am one to go for change.

My question to my follows is, do you believe change to be good or do you prefer to stay in the same routine? There’s no right or wrong answer of course and no judgments. I’m curious to see other’s opinions.

A New Challenge

So I’ve decided to make a new challenge for myself. This is one that is making me nervous just thinking about.

A little back story, my oldest son and I have a very strong bond. I have a great bond with all my kids, but for the beginning of my oldest son’s life it was just he and I. I always tell him he is my hero because he saved me from a very dark situation. Without him I don’t know if I would have come out of it. So he is my little hero. He loves super hero’s such as Batman and captain America (thank you Auntie Bry Bry). I’m not into superhero’s. I have nothing against anyone who likes them. I even support my one in his love of superheroes which is apparent by the millions of superhero toys he has in his room. I just can’t get over how unrealistic it is. So nothing bad for anyone who likes them. I read Batman books to my kids and play superheroes with them and dress up and everything.

Now back to my point. Because my oldest son loves superheroes and he is my hero, I’ve decided to write a children’s book for him. I want to give it to him as a birthday present. Why am I so nervous you ask? Because, other than this blog, I have not shared my writing with anyone. Not even my children. Before now, I was not confident in my writing and didn’t want anyone to tell me it was terrible or that I should choose a different dream. But, since this year is all about challenging myself and getting out of my shell, I’ve decided to go for it. His birthday is in October so I have plenty of time. But I hope to get it done soon so I can share it with all of you and get some critiques before I give it to him.

What is some advice you all have for me in my quest to making a superhero book? I’m wanting to make it a little more realistic. Any and all feedback is welcome and appreciated. Share your thoughts.

Challenging Myself

Part of my New Years resolution to find my happiness is to challenge myself. So I took the next step and signed up for an obstacle course race. It’s not something I would normally do but my sister owns a gym and was asking people to join her team so my husband and I both registered for this race. We’re both quite nervous but extremely excited. The race is in July but I registered now so I wouldn’t chicken out. Stay posted and I will let you all know how it goes.

What are some new challenges you have decided to take up?

“Live A Life Worth Writing About”

I have known my entire life that I wanted to be a writer. I used to write kid’s stories when I was younger. I even wrote one from the point of view of my dog. It was absolutely terrible but I was so proud of myself. That will always be my first finished project. My parents thought my dreams of being a writer were silly. They thought I should find a more realistic career choice.

Through school, I took every English and writing class I could. I was in the creative writing club and spent as much time as I could writing. I listened to my parents and went to college and will never forget what one of my English Professors told me. He was very narcissistic and said that to be a good writer we needed to live a life worth writing about. No one understood what exactly he was saying so he went on further to explain. He said we needed to travel and only write about fancy jobs, interesting people, and exotic places.

A little background, I come from a poor family. I have never had anything handed to me. Everything I have I work hard for. My parents didn’t help me pay for school. I am thousands of dollars in student loan debt.

For my professor to say this, I was devastated. All I could think about was how was I going to have the money to do all these amazing things. I started to question my dreams of being a writer. I transferred to a different school that specialized more in creative writing and met an amazing professor. My favorite creative writing class was taught by Professor Payne. He is a published environmental nonfiction writer. His writing is phenomenal. One day after class he held me back so he could talk to me. He told me my writing was very good and that he thought my dream of being a writer was spot on. I shared with him my fears of not living an interesting enough life to write about. He laughed and explained to me that the life we live now is more than worthy of being written about. He told me my job at an animal shelter could lead to a mystery novel or my past jobs or friends or even family could lead to an amazing novel.

I totally agree with him. I live in a small town where nothing ever happens. But that’s the perfect setting for a book. Make something happen.

So now that I have returned to my journey of writing a novel and being published, I’m so excited to use the life I have. Would I like to travel and gain more worldly experience? Yes. And I will one day. Right now I plan to use what I have as inspiration and then go from there. I have all the time in the world to travel and write exotic novels.

What is your greatest inspiration for your writing?

Loneliness of a broken-heart

As I lay in bed attempting to write this post, my head is full of thoughts as I stare at the empty side of the bed that is supposed to hold the man I have given my whole life and devoted the last 5 years of my life to. Dinners are filled with silence more painful than childbirth. I think how I would react to a kind word or a sweet caress. Would I give in or stay rigid to the absurdity of the gesture. My heart has grown so cold to the thought of a happily ever after. I shiver from what, hurt feelings or the cold winter draft that leaks through the window that brings the early morning rays. Should I give into the bland routine I have grown accustomed to or should I demand to be loved like a newborn baby? Time has numbed any thought of Prince Charming. My dreams are filled with nothing. Gone are the wishes of falling head over heels. In its place are dreams of dungeons with no escape. To be trapped is an understatement. This is worse than a prison for there is no expiry date. I have pleaded for a reprieve only to be ignored like the 4 walls that surround me.

This is just a start of a thought for a story. Any thoughts? Good or bad? Should I pursue this or just let it rest? Input is always welcome.

Self care

As part of my resolution to do more for myself to help me be happier and not feel so bogged down with being a full time stay at home mom, I decided to start doing a strength and conditioning class at my sister’s gym that she owns. I have always enjoyed working out. I Rand long distance in high school for the track team and ran cross country in college. I enjoy being healthy and it’s wonderful to have the ability to workout and put that kind of healthy stress on my body.

Having 3 kids has made it hard for me to workout since my youngest is 9 months old so she still depends greatly on me. I love being a mother, but I have been told multiple times that I should also make time for myself. If I feel good then I can be a better mom.

Today was day 2 of working out and my body is very sore. It’s the good kind of sore that makes you happy to know you did more than sit on your butt all day cleaning up spit up, poop, pee, and toys. I’ve definitely noticed that since I started my blog and started following my resolutions I have felt more relaxed, less stressed, and overall happier. I still have bad days where I don’t want to get out of bed, but my good days are so good.

On top of working out, I started writing again which is something I have not done in 5 and a half years since I gave birth to my oldest son. I hope to find the confidence to share some of my writing with you all to get feedback good and bad. I hope everyone is having a splendid time with their resolutions and have a wonderful weekend!

Great advice

I have spent my entire day today reading blogs for new bloggers and new writers. Since being a published author is my dream, I thought it would help to hear from people with more experience.

I was blown away with the amount of advice, encouraging words, words of wisdom, and positive motivation. With my post partem depression, I find it hard to stay focused on tasks. My mind is always all over the place. I also am a stay at home mom so my angels are always running all over the place. It’s been so nice to see that I am not alone in my struggles.

What I love most about my journey so far is that I am surrounded by like minded people. Individuals who struggle but always find their way back. After all we are all human so struggling is inevitable. It’s been so nice to get positive comments in my blogs and words of encouragement especially on the bad days.

Thank you for following my blog. I look forward to hearing more from you all. And as always, feedback is always welcome.