Joyce Carol Oates is one of our favorite writers and writing personalities. A prolific tweeter, the 75 year old today put out 10 pieces of great advice for writing on her Twitter account. Check them out below, and let us know what you think in the comments!
10 WRITING TIPS (free): 10) Write your heart out.
9) Read, observe, listen intensely!--as if your life depended upon it.
8) Don't try to anticipate an ideal reader--or any reader. He/ she might exist--but is reading someone else.
7) Be your own editor/ critic. Sympathetic but merciless!
6) Unless you are experimenting with form--gnarled, snarled & obscure--be alert for possibilities of paragraphing.
5) When in doubt how to end a chapter, bring in a man with a gun. (This is Raymond Chandler's advice, not mine. I would not try this.)
4) Keep in mind Oscar Wilde: "A little sincerity is a dangerous thing, and a great deal of it is absolutely fatal."
3) You are writing for your contemporaries--not for Posterity. If you are lucky, your contemporaries will become Posterity.
2) The first sentence can be written only after the last sentence has been written. FIRST DRAFTS ARE HELL. FINAL DRAFTS, PARADISE.
1) Write your heart out.