Chip away, every day. Great writing comes partly from direct effort. Sink deep down into your characters, look around you at your circumstances and the other characters, and respond as they would.
One is not to listen to anyone. She wanted to get to where she was going and she wanted to get there yesterday because time was getting away from her. The black dogs of depression are never far away for most writers and being able to draw on these quiet reflective places when the hounds start yapping will help keep you safe and sane.
But I would also encourage you to explore yoga and meditation. I know what that feels like. Pick up non-fiction, esoteric enthusiast magazines and old newspapers. If I want a dose of undigested life, I jump on the train to Wyong. You want to be like them.
Because right here is all we ever have. You cannot solve life. But pondering its paradoxes can become a lifelong fascination. It might take 5 or 10 years. Persist unblinkingly Some people write because they have a strong belief that they will make it as a screenwriter.
You need to create times in your life that are sacrosanct and not let anything stop you from being at your desk at those times. Listen openly but accept discerningly There are two mistakes you can make as a writer in relation to feedback. I say that for two reasons. Because when we travel our body automatically becomes more alert to our environment.
Of course, this means grappling with questions for which there are no answers and initially you will find this frustrating. Progress humbly You are going to get good at this.
I understand the impatience. And the other is to give credence to every crackpot who offers you an opinion. Examine the characterisation in 30 Rock, Arrested Development and Community. Believe, by all means. As a writer of romantic comedy, if I get things right, I get to laugh and cry on a daily basis.
My time working as a housekeeper in Surrey, England, was a boom time for my writing but a very slow time romantically. Look at the way the story develops within a series of The Killing, The Sopranos or Breaking Bad — how do they keep you hooked?
Or being a Wedding Singer. Frustration, Disappointment, and maybe even Abject-Failure-on-Sea. She was in a hurry. What is it about the individual characters — and the overall orchestration of the cast — that engages and delivers conflict? I want to option it! One of my former students has just done the km Camino de Santiago walk in Spain and I can tell from her exuberant posts on Facebook that this Latin experience will bubble up in her work somewhere.
Go do it now. But partly also from the work of unseen hands working upstairs on the second shift.
If you already run, swim, cycle, walk the dog, surf or sail, fantastic. But that is an entirely separate craft that took time to master.
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