Writing lessons are a dime a dozen these days.
Every Joe or Karen with a blog and a Twitter account can give their two cents on just about anything. (Just like me.)
But when someone who has written as prolifically as Steven King speaks up on it, maybe we should listen.
First Lesson: It is difficult to know exactly where a story is going before you start.
My advice here would be to overcome the biggest hangup for most aspiring writers – and just start.
Write 1,000 words a day for a few years and see where that takes you.
Writer Dani Shapiro recommends being completely free with your fiction.
Second Lesson: Even when you are working well, it will not always feel like it.
I wrote about this just the other day in a post about writing shame.
When one is so close to the work, it is easy to see it all in a negative light.
I have been writing long enough at this point though to have felt the ebb and flow of it.
Sometimes a post can feel like a masterpiece. Often it feels like rubbish.
The quality of writing is subjective though.
I hope you do.
Ihad written three other novels before Carrie—Rage, The Long Walk, and The Running Man were later published. Rage is the most troubling of them. The Long Walk may be the best of them. But none of them taught me the things I learned from Carrie White. The most important is that the writer’s original perception of a character or characters may be as erroneous as the reader’s. Running a close second was the realization that stopping a piece of work just because it’s hard, either emotionally or imaginatively, is a bad idea. Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position.
-Stephen King, On Writing