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Subject:  Re: Advice for a Beginner Date:  9/24/2003  4:45 PM
Author:  Chapman208 Number:  2385 of 4871

>>>>How about the opposite problem? I have trouble deciding to "do it", even though I have stories bursting and characters whispering all the time!

SB: Take the Nike approach: "Just do it!" At least it'll shut up those voices for a while! Sit down, pick up a pen/pencil or place your hands on a keyboard, and just start writing. Stream-of-consciousness stuff, if nothing else. Or pick a topic at random and write about it. It's amazing how easily prose can flow through your fingers once you get going..... I began with a vague idea of the book I was going to write, and had 10 pages done the first day without trying too hard. (The first few chapters probably would have been better had I "warmed up" with some short stories, but at least I got the story going. Now I just have to clean up those first chapters, to make them as good as the later ones.)

Don't let a fear of failure daunt you. You don't have to show your writing to anyone until you are happy with it. Throw away your early pieces if you feel like it. No one but you will know. No one writes/paints/sculpts/composes a masterpiece their first time out. Let your skill grow through exercise. The more you write, the better you'll get. Don't demand too much of yourself right off the bat. If you're afraid that the first thing you write will be terrible, don't worry about it. Even if it is, you'll get better. How good your last story is is much more important than how good your first one was....

Mark. (Weren't there some SF books/stories written about people who discovered they were latent telepaths when the whispering in their heads grew to the point that they thought they were going insane? <g>)
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