Should Bloggers Stop Posting Writing Tips?

A writing blog is nothing if it isn’t helping at least a few people improve their craft. It doesn’t have to be a wake-up call for the masses that changes writing forever…but it should be relevant, entertaining, and at some level educational.

Hello, writerly friends. This post is partly in response to Hannah Heath’s recent post, Why You Shouldn’t Listen to Writing Tips Blogs, but in reality it’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while.

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Google “writing advice” and you’ll get about 371,000,000 results. Seriously. I Googled it just now. Use the tag “writing advice” on a YouTube video, and unless you’ve already got 1,000,000 subscribers, that tag’ll do…basically nothing to boost your viewership.

You get what I’m saying. Writing advice has been done to death. It’s all over the Internet, sprawled over all social media, and published in hundreds if not thousands of books. As they say, there’s nothing new under the sun, and it’s hard to think of a piece of writing advice that hasn’t been blogged about a million times already.

And if you’ve read Hannah’s post (which you should have by now — come on, I’ve enabled tabbed browsing for you. Clicking on a link’s not that hard), you’ll know that we probably shouldn’t even listen to most of that advice. Sure, it’s great to learn from the professionals, but it’s even better to learn from published works of fiction. And even better to just sit your butt down and write, and carve out your own rules and style.

Plus, then you got the bloggers like me who aren’t even professionals. We’re just spitting out writing advice we’ve heard over and over again. Every once in awhile, if you’re lucky, we might do a post on a problem we actually have experience with, but that’s once in a blue moon.

So what do you think? Should writers stop posting writing advice? And if we do…what should we do instead? Book reviews? Updates on our personal writing journeys? Posts filled with memes? Or should we just accept our irrelevance in the abyss that is the Internet?

I don’t have an answer for this, guys. Do you think writing blogs are a waste of time? (If so, what are you doing here?) Are there any topics that you wish more writing bloggers would cover, but they never do? Do you wish writing blogs focused more on book reviews and less on writing tips?

As I said, I’m nothing without you guys, so please leave your answers in the comments so I can improve this blog…and, in a small way…the Internet.

(Who am I kidding, we’re all irrelevant in the long run.)

Thanks so much for your help!

Thursday Rant: Taking Realistic Dialogue Too Far

Hi guys! So this is a new series I’m doing, where basically I link to my Thursday YouTube video. Today’s topic is taking realistic dialogue too far. Avoiding stilted conversation is one thing, but filling your dialogue with “uh” and “um” and unrelated asides is just as distracting.

How do you approach writing dialogue? Any tips or tricks you’d like to share?

You Should Write Fiction (Even If You Hate It)

You should write fiction even if you don’t want to. Whaaaa…Faith, where is the logic in this? Why would I spend my time doing something I don’t like doing?

There are many posts like this spiraling through the interwebs. But I’m rebooting my blog, I’m hoping some new peeps are poking around (hi peoples!). So in the off chance you aren’t already knee-deep in your novel and aren’t thinking “Faith I don’t even need this; what the heck?” — here are my awesome reasons you should write creatively.

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As someone who hopes to make fiction-writing her primary source of income lately, I’m obviously biased. But storytelling is one of the most basic forms of human communication (look it up), and poetry’s pretty swag too, even though I personally want to bite anyone who tells me to make some.

 

(Wait…does that mean I’m telling myself to write poetry even though I don’t want to? Does that mean I need to bite myself? ASDFGEGLALS)

 

Ahem. So maybe you had to write a short story in eighth grade and you hated it.* But here’s the thing: writing for a cranky, underpaid, middle-school English teacher** is very different for writing for yourself, because you suddenly got an idea you think would be cool in story format. If it’s just up to you, there’s no pressure, no grades, no angsty peer reviewers sniggering over your shoulder…just you and your imagination.

 

*By the way, if you didn’t have to do this…why are you telling me you don’t like fiction writing?! You can’t knock it if you didn’t try it!

**Honestly, props to any middle or elementary school teachers out there. You all are the true gods and godessess of the land.

 

If you try fiction writing again and you still hate it, that’s okay too. The fiction writing world is not for all of us. (Some people actually like not having weekly existential crises. Honestly, I don’t know what they’re getting out of life.)

All of this to say, if you get an idea or even are just struck with a weird desire to write — maybe due to a post like this, who knows — don’t dismiss it because “I hate writing.” Give it a go. Maybe you’ll give up after three words, or maybe it’ll blossom into something beautiful. You never know until you try.

 

You should write fiction because it makes your creative friends happy.

Seriously. It doesn’t matter how bad you are at story, grammar, punctuation, dialogue, or any of that good stuff. We can fix that later. The minute I hear one of my non-writerly friends is taking up the creative gauntlet, I SCREAM FOR JOY because oh my gosh this is so fun and what idea do you have tell me all about it do you need help worldbuilding I kinda suck at worldbuilding but I have lots of good ideas let’s play with things let’s genderbend characters and experiment with psychology and learn stuff and plot and scribble and scream and fangirl and basically GAH I’m so happy you joined us if only for a short period of time and YOU MIGHT STAY who knows do you want to do NaNoWriMo?

I’m sure this never comes off as intimidating at all.

 

And finally…if you do want to write fiction, what are you waiting for? Boom. Ta-da. There it is. Post over. Well, kind of. If you’ve always wanted to write poetry, or a short story, or a novel, go for it. Again, there are posts all over the internet about how to write if you’re a college student/young mom/billionaire playboy, so I won’t go into that. If you really want to, you can write the freaking thing.

However, do know that you could be getting yourself into a buttload of work. Not realizing that is how you end up like me, with 1,000,000,000 ideas and 0 finished projects. (Technically I’ve completed 3 totally different first drafts, so that counts for something, right?)

Not everyone who does creative writing wants to publish and that’s fine. Some people just want to post their work on a free site like Wattpad for all to see, and some people never want to show that Word document to anyone. These are all fine options. Still, you should know that whatever option you choose, there is work involved. It’s not all fun and games.

That being said…JOIN THE FICTION WRITING SIDE. WE HAVE COOKIES.

*mic drop*

(What? Cookies totally deserve a mic drop. They’re cool. Why else do you think all websites use them?)