Below are my 5 top tips for writers –
Writing Tip Number 1
If you want to become a writer you first need to be a reader.
You should read a wide range of books from different authors and genres, this will help you develop your writing skills.
From reading, you will get a sense of the different writing styles other authors use. You will also get a feel for the way they write and how they express their own voice through their words. By reading a diverse range you can start to see what writing styles you like and in turn, this will help you to start developing your own writing voice and style.
Every genre has different reader expectations that writers need to meet. So by reading as many books in your genre as you can, this will give you a feel for what is expected.
As a broad example, a romance book needs to have a romance and a Crime book wouldn’t be the same without a Crime. As well, for Non-fiction books a different style of writing is used than would be for fiction books.
Reading is a great way of researching your genre and learning the expectations each one has.
I am currently writing children’s picture books for ages 2-5 years old and even though my youngest daughter is now 10 years old and too old for reading picture books, I still read plenty of them for myself to help develop my skills to write in this genre.
You can check out my range of children’s rhyming picture books here – My Children’s Books
Writing Tip Number 2
If you are serious about writing then creating yourself a writing habit will be one of the most beneficial things you can do. This will not only help to increase your productivity it will also help you to get into the right mentality to write.
If you are writing full time then it is no different to going to work. Treat writing as a job and create a routine for your writing. Time blocking your day for writing can be beneficial and ensure you have writing time.
If writing is a hobby or a side business for you then think of it the same way as you would about going to the gym or club. If you do an exercise class you will usually attend this at the same time every week. This not only helps you stick to it but helps you mentally prepare for what is coming. You should treat writing the same way and set yourself the same day and time every week to sit down and write.
Writing Tip Number 3
Practice makes perfect!
With everything else in life, we know that practice makes perfect but for writing this is sometimes overlooked. It is often assumed that you can either write or you can’t.
However, writing is no different and I promise you that with plenty of practice you will get better.
I left high school a reluctant reader with dyslexia and was awful at writing. Even when I started up my first blog back in 2016 my earlier posts were terrible. They were badly written and full of spelling and grammar mistakes.
I could have given up then and thought to myself I can’t write, but I persevered. Now as I’m writing this in 2021 I am a 7 x published author, I won silver for my book in The Wishing Shelf Book Awards and my first poetry book was a bestseller on Amazon and thankfully my writing has improved.
When you start writing, do it just for yourself. It doesn’t matter if what you write never leaves your computer or notebook. This will give you the peace of mind to keep practising until you finally write something you feel happy about sharing with the world.
My first book Pete the Cheeky Parakeet was not the first book I ever wrote. It was actually my 6th story but it was the first one that I felt was good enough to be published.
Writers Tip Number 4
If you want to become a successful author then this tip is crucial.
If you try sitting down and thinking of ideas for books most of the time you will come up blank. If you then go and do something else away from writing, suddenly ideas will flood to you.
This is why it is so important to always have with you something to write on. As trust me as quick as the ideas appear they will be gone and you will have no way of reconnecting with them.
I always have a notepad with me or a notes app on my phone. I even make sure I always have a notebook by my bed. This is because my brain seems to want to kick into action every time it should be sleeping.
If you follow this tip, in time it will be a huge boost to your productivity. This year so far I have published 4 books in 4 consecutive months. This is because I write every idea I have down in my notebook. That way as soon as I have finished writing one book I already know what the next book is going to be so I can move straight on to writing that.
I currently have enough book ideas to keep me going until 2022.
Writers Tip Number 5
If your goal as a writer is to only produce 1 book in your lifetime then ignore this step. If you want to make a go at being a writer and have plans for more than one book then this tip is for you.
You will have put a lot of time and effort into writing your first book and once it is finished it is tempting just to stop there and wait around for it to be published. However, to maximise productivity it is best to keep on writing.
While your book is with an editor or illustrator, you will find that you are then waiting on them to finish so you can carry on to getting your book published. While you are waiting, this is the perfect time to start plotting out or writing your next book. If you stick to your writing habit as we discussed above then it is easier to keep the momentum going.
I have heard the saying a few times from writers that ‘nothing sells your first book better than your second’. I certainly sell a lot more books now that I have 7 books. It has given me credibility and shows I am serious about my writing.
I haven’t even done the sensible thing either of writing books in a series (although this will change soon). All my current books are stand-alone but having more than one book has helped with visibility and increased sales.
I hope that you have found my writing tips useful and I wish you all the best on your writing journey.
You can also take a look at my post-Traditional Publishing vs Self-Publishing for more information on the different publishing routes. I also run a Facebook group the Indie Author Support Group for all authors or anyone looking to get into writing to come for help and support.