What They Never Taught In School – 21 Valuable Lessons From Really Successful Authors

Self-doubt, procrastination, writer’s block, these are not typical of you, but of any writer, even successful ones. It makes a writer feel totally alone, eats away at your confidence and ultimately your resolves weakens to such a degree that you simply quit. The lessons we can take from successful writers are – what problems they have faced and how they have overcome them. Here, we are sharing with you 21 Valuable Lessons From Really Successful Authors.

  1. The first challenge for the writer is to figure out what they want to say and how they want to say it. According to Ryan Holiday, he had to live the challenge rather than write it out. He went out and did unusual things, which ultimately translated into his creation.
  2. The next biggest challenge for a writer is the proverbial writer’s block. It is a nightmare every writer has faced at least once in his or her lifetime. The first thing to do is to stop writing. The next best thing is to read extensively. Adequate rest, regular exercise, not stressing oneself about writing should help. What Joel Friedlander did was sign up in a free-writing group, which gave him access to different streams of creativity that ultimately opened up his imagination.
  3. Another challenge for a budding writer is finding motivation to actually sitting down to write. Days go by without one word put on paper, for no better reason than procrastination. The only way to get past this is strict routine and habit. Make it a point to sit at your workstation at an appointed time and no matter what be at it for a pre-determined period.
  4. There are days when the environment around you will be too distracting for writing. Children, family chores, phone calls, there will no be no end to it; the sheer noise and bustle of everyday life is enough to make one’s head empty of thought. Successful writers have a getaway place for their work – Mark Twain had a single room cottage in his garden where he would shut himself up and write. But you might have a time out in your room when no one is permitted to disturb or distract you so that you might let the creative juices flow.
  5. Another nightmare for a writer is lack of ideas. You know you want to write, but you have no idea what to write about! It happens to everybody, even famous writers have been known to run out of ideas from time to time. Nick Loper, blogger and coach has a very easy solution to his. He simply jots down whenever he has an idea on a file he has in his computer. You can have a notepad or a smartphone handy; over time you will compile a hoard of ideas, from which you can quickly refer and borrow when you are required to write something.
  6. As your writing expands, and you find success, your pleasure might turn into a chore. This afflicts many successful writers and when this happens, the quality falls, not to mention that what was once a stress buster turns into a point of stress. Sue Anne Dunlevie, blogger, has a remedy for that. She has a blogging coach who helps her find her way through the boredom of writing.
  7. Writing actually has two parts – figuring out which of your ideas you find worth sharing, and then finding the right words to make the maximum impact. The best way to beat this, according to Danny Iny, is to outline the idea first, before the words begin to flow. Instead of trying to do both things at once, you might find breaking up the process of writing into two parts easier to handle.
  8. Sometimes writers might find the first draft to be too difficult. It is not always possible to have perfection at our hands at first try and it might demotivate you to be a writer. In that case Pat Flynn’s tip may become handy – he simply talked about his first draft and recorded it. That was the first draft and he then crafted out his writing from it.
  9. Taking of perfection, there will be times when you shall be dissatisfied with your writing. Perfectionism is the bane of writers; nothing is too good for them even as they strive towards that elusive goal. The key is to write, write and write again, of course, but help from a professional editor takes care of most of the burden in this case. Also, author and blogger Steve Scott advises not to take yourself too seriously. It just might be that even Shakespeare did not take himself too seriously and his writings endured, didn’t they?
  10. Dissatisfaction with your creation might make you doubt yourself as a writer. Do not give in to that. If you find it too much, simply start keeping a journal where you compile your thoughts and ideas, may be even sketches and outlines of stories. Over time, slowly but surely, you shall have the skill to turn them into writings worth publishing.
  11. Trying too hard to impress may prove self-defeating. It is true that writers are often conduits of wisdom that are guiding lights to the readers, but in trying to be so, be careful not to become self-conscious, or even narcissistic. To avoid that, write with a single reader in mind – a real person. That way, you will cease to care for a faceless audience and be more involved in solving the problem for the one you know.
  12. The style of writing differs in different mediums. When established author Mary Jaksch wrote her first blog, she was shocked to find that very few read her, if at all, and when they did they did not like what she wrote. She finally changed her style of writing for online readers and found success.
  13. Before you rush to publish, do revise your writing and edit carefully. Otherwise your creation will be liable to be rejected, or even worse, a sloppy work. There will be ample time to publish, but first do your revision minutely.
  14. Learn to be thrifty with wordstoo much of a rambling work and readers will lose interest. It will also bring down the quality of your writing.
  15. Nowadays ghostwriting is prolific. For somebody who loves to write there is plenty of work and good money to go with it too. But you might find, after some time, that the idea that another person is getting the credit for your writing is not a palatable one. One way to get around it is by rebranding yourself. That is what Damian Farnworth did – he marketed himself as a professional writer for hire, somebody who can elevate the visibility of the company. Be a copyblogger like him.
  16. Once you have your writing published, the next step is to promote your work. If you are shy and self-effacing, this can be quite a challenge. Having your own podcast based on your latest writing is an effective way to get around this problem.
  17. When you first start writing, you have nothing to lose. But as you gain fame, there are expectations from the readers, which can create pressure on your writing. Always, write to please yourself; it does not matter what the reader expects. That way, you can never run out of creativity.
  18. Handing the finance can be tricky for a writer, more so because the income from writing can fluctuate. Even successful writers have dry patches; so find way to balance your income, so that when there is an ebb in cash inflow, you have something to tide you over.
  19. Often you might find that you have great ideas, but none to sell them to. Getting real clients is something of a challenge. The best way to combat this is to get in touch with people or organizations that are in need of your service. That way, you can let them know about your ideas through your writings.
  20. Another thing beginners are concerned with is competition. There is no need to be; instead of being wary, embrace it. More competition is an opportunity to increase your own worth; competition helps you identify your areas of improvement; you can enhance your worth only when there is enough competition.
  21. Last but not least, writers are often an isolated lot. Prolonged period of self-imposed isolation can influence your mind and body, and not in any good way. Therefore, find time to regularly be in touch with the world outside you. That way, you shall find more fodder for your ideas as well.

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