THE WRITER'S CRAFT
Tips to aspiring writers from Ben Bova


No two writers work exactly the same way, but there are certain things that any writer must do to be successful.
Here is one of them:

Write every day

The most important thing is to work. Work every day. It is best to set aside a particular time of the day (or night) for your writing, and then write during that time at least five or six days each week. Let nothing interfere with your writing time.
It may be as little as one single hour. You may produce only a page or two per day. But if you stick with it, day after day, your output of pages will mount up.
All writers have bad days.
Listen to Joseph Conrad: "I sit down religiously every morning. I sit down for eight hours a day -- and the sitting down is all. In the course of that working day of eight hours I write three sentences which I erase before leaving the table in despair....Sometimes it takes all my resolution and power of self-control to refrain from butting my head against the wall."
Despite his bad days, Conrad had enough good ones to write Lord Jim, Heart of Darkness, and many other classic novels and short stories.
Don't worry if you have a day or two in which you can't produce even one decent page.
Stay at it!
Try your best, every day.
The words will come.
 It is so easy to find a reason for not writing. Writing is hard, grueling work; it's much easier to do something else. Especially if you have a "real" job that demands eight hours a day or more, it is difficult to make the time for writing. Yet that is precisely what you must do. Make the time. Writers don't "find" the time to write. They make time for their writing.
 Family, friends, job, all the other pleasures and obligations of your life must take second place to writing. If you are going to be a successful writer, you must write. Every day. Preferably, at the same time every day.
 

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