Welcome to my blog

Welcome to my blog. Here you will find tips that will help you write books and articles that establish you as the expert in your market.
                   --Lee Pound

February 2020
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How to Get Started Writing

If you want to write a book, start writing. Open a blank word processor file and write something, anything, just write. Get used to the feel of putting words on paper. Feel the flow of the sentences, feel the rhythm of your writing, allow your thoughts to flow onto the page unimpeded by censorship. You are not writing for publication, you are writing for practice. Nobody will see these words. They are yours to save or get rid of as you see fit. Write for five or ten minutes and go back to see what you have written.

Like most new writers, you will have made errors, incomplete sentences, typos and spelling, tense agreement and so forth. This does not matter. The key point is that you have written on a subject of some interest to you and that now you have a draft to work with.

This is the key point to writing. You must have a written draft before you can edit it. Drafts are by definition not finished work. All drafts need editing.

Do not worry at this point about your writing skills. They will improve dramatically as you continue to write. Every time you edit, you will learn new skills and new areas to watch as you write. Before long you will be writing at second draft level the first time.

Now, here is my key message to all writers, first time or experienced:

Give yourself permission to write badly.

That’s right. Do not worry about how you write. When you do a first draft you are using the creative side of your mind, the part that flows but does not edit. This will produce wonderful ideas and not so wonderful prose. When you edit, you use the other, logical side of your mind, which wants to change everything the moment you allow it onto the page.

If you let your editor work while your creative mind is working, you will confuse both and you will never finish.

If you are writing a novel, finish the entire first draft before attempting to edit your work. Most writers will labor over their first chapter for months, getting it just right. Then they will write the rest of the book. The danger in this approach is that you may find that the first chapter no longer works and must be discarded along with all the work you put in on it.

The same goes for non-fiction. Outline your book first, making sure that the key elements you want to cover are present in the best order possible before beginning to write. This does not mean that you spend months outlining. I find that the best way to do this is to get out of the house, take a pad and paper to a restaurant, preferably fast food (you don’t have to eat there) where the light is good and nobody bothers you, and jot down notes as to the best topics to cover, the theme of your book, the approach you want to take, and the stories you want to use. Then write your entire draft as fast as you can write.

Only after you do all of this, whether you write fiction or non-fiction, do go back and edit.

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1 comment to How to Get Started Writing

  • Lucy

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


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