It’s a new year and that means we’re all raring to WRITE WRITE WRITE, right?
Who are we kidding? We miss our fun and free time over Christmas, we have the January blues… BUT, we can do something about this and gear ourselves up for a good writing year!
For me, reading books is a great way to feel inspired and motivated, and the first book I chose to read this year was WRITE WRITE WRITE… Not Necessarily in That Order, by Daniel Martin Eckhart.
Daniel’s penned several feature-length movies, worked on TV shows and has adapted several novels for the small screen – all while holding down a job. WRITE WRITE WRITE outlines his experiences in his journey towards this goal, and how he keeps motivated.
It’s a good read – it doesn’t feel preachy but it does point out some sobering pointers, and it’s relayed with honesty and humour.
One of my favourite tips, right off the bat, was to “enjoy procrastination – if you feel guilty about it, it won’t be productive”.
Despite claiming the book is not a how-to-write tome, Daniel’s anecdotes offer us plenty of this sort of material alongside the practical advice on making it as a writer in the industry.
Some of my favourite bits of advice throughout the book include tips on writing good dialogue:
Good actors want to act, not talk.
Removing expletives allows actors to channel passion into what’s on the page.
Crappy dialogues can come from feeding characters words to serve the plot.
Be real, then cut out the boring stuff!
Throughout the book, Daniel grounds us by making sure we don’t have any excuses not to write or pursue a writing career:
Discipline and stamina come before craft and talent.
It’s not about writing what you know, it’s about writing your passion.
At some point you’ll need recognition. Don’t wait for it – seek it out.
Everything you apply will force you to deliver – you only lose if you don’t try.
The amateur lingers and despairs, the pro gets on with it.
Overall, I’d say this is a great read for new and more established writers, because it gives a good balance of first-timer tricks and tips, as well as insight into the rocky path to success and tried and tested methods to get there. Above all, though, it’s really motivating!