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The Best Advice to Aspiring Authors of 2019
Written by
She Writes
December 2019
Written by
She Writes
December 2019

What a fulfilling year of book releases and inspiration from some of our favorite authors around the country! If you’re aspiring to write a book and embark on your own publishing path, here are some of our favorite wisdom-filled tips from women writers who have helped to pave the way.

 Sara Shepard

"Show your work. Because it’s going to do you no good if you’re hiding it on your computer, too afraid to let the world see it. People might critique you – everyone’s a critic – but that’s what makes you a stronger and better writer.”

Cynthia Hand

“Write what you love. That's it. Don't write what you think will sell, don't write what other people tell you to write, don't write because you want to be an Author with a capital A, but write out of love, out of the heart's field.”

Lisa Tognola

“Be passionate. You will eat, breathe and dream your book for a long time, so make sure your project is one that matters to you. Your passion will help energize you and motivate you to keep going when you feel discouraged and want to quit, and trust me, those times will come.”

Briana Telgemeier

“Once you start to share, people can enjoy them, give you feedback, and help you improve. You might even meet people who share your interests, and now you’ve got a support system! Don’t wait to start sharing your work!"

Iris Johansen

“Always finish what you start even if you decide in the middle that you want to go on to something else,” she advises to aspiring writers. “I usually get a kernel of a plot idea and then invite the characters to the party. I research, live with them, and then start writing. I find they build their own world.”

Beatriz Williams

“Read constantly and critically, within your genre and outside it. Number two, find a way to learn your craft from someone who does it exceptionally well. I take the position that you should never stop learning, you should never feel as if your writing is as good as you can possibly make it.”

 Jasmine Guillory

“Take breaks if you need to, read craft books to improve your writing if they help you (they don’t help everyone!), but keep writing, keep submitting your work, keep trying. It took me years to get published, and I almost gave up more than once in that time, and I’m so glad I didn’t.”

Erin Hilderbrand

“Get something on paper, you can always go back and fix it... but I think there's a lot of fear, a lot of hesitation, trepidation in writers, because they're afraid of writing something stupid or something not good. Just get it down on paper."

Margaret Atwood

“The only way you can write the truth is to assume that what you set down will never be read. Not by any other person, and not even by yourself at some later date. Otherwise you begin excusing yourself. You must see the writing as emerging like a long scroll of ink from the index finger of your right hand; you must see your left hand erasing it.”

Dorothea Benton Frank

“First I write an overview. What’s the point of this story? What kind of character should tell this story? Where should it take place? As for the plot, I would advise an aspiring writer to take the novel they love the most and take the thing apart.”

Chanel Cleeton

“Publishing can be a solitary endeavor, especially in the early days, and dealing with setbacks and rejection can be tough, so perseverance is key. When you face a disappointment in your writing career, it’s natural to be sad, but the most important thing is to keep writing and learning, and to never, ever give up.”

Taylor Jenkins Reid

“You cannot let the need to be good stop you from trying. A lot of my content is garbage when it first comes out, but I am willing to stare the garbage in the face and make it better. I know people say, ‘Good is the enemy of great.’ But great can be the enemy of starting.”

Jill Santopolo

“Forget about what you think you should write, or what is currently selling, or any of that, and write the story you need to write. The heart and passion and authenticity will come through, and that’s what will sell your book and will allow readers to feel connected to your writing."

Marissa Meyer

“Do not rush through your revisions and edits just because you want to be published nooooooooowwww. Rather, take the time you need to bring your work to a quality that will set it apart from all the other writers in an agent or editor’s inbox. That might be a few extra months, or it might be a few extra years, but it will not be wasted time.”

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