When I open my email every morning, or anytime during the day (or night) for that matter, check the regular bookmarks in my browser, I constantly get the impression that there is more advice for writers out there than people doing ‘actual writing’. Ok, writing advice counts too but then…It seems practically everybody has a piece of advice (does that include me?), about how you should approach your writing, when, in what conditions, what writing and research methodology you should use, how to overcome fear, procrastination. Everything.
Even other people doing something creative, painters for example, and particularly musicians have advice. They put it in their art, songs… Remember that great soul/blues tune, “Night Time Is The Right Time”, probably best done by Carla Thomas & Rufus Thomas duet? Let’s count that as some form of writing advice. So does any and all of this advice knocking at your door work? It doesn’t, and yet it also does.
Following any of it literally and to the full certainly doesn’t. It can get close, even very close to what you need as a writer, but then, after all, it is not YOUR way, not if it is a sublimation of a number of writing approaches. And then, it certainly does because there is always at least a tiny bit that complements and suits your ideas, daily agenda, approach to writing, style, and anything that will let you commit words to paper or your word processor.
With all that, you might be the writer that doesn’t want any advice, you can just sit down and the words start pouring out of you. But then, all writers have been in such a situation, sometimes less, sometimes more often. Still, the point is that there are more of those times than not when you need to think things out in detail first, do some research, consult, eat, sleep…
And then it is all connected to one sole individual and all that makes him. There is no absolute general approach. Close to it, maybe. And if you still need and want to know what it is, you can sit down and make your writer’s roadmap, whether it is connected to a certain type of writing projects or the one you are concentrating on at the moment. Whether there is even a personal general one, I’m not so sure.
Personally, I often start by putting on “The Night Time Is The Right Time”.
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