|Terry Odell, Mark L. Lefevbre of Kobo, David Boop|
For me, the experience was especially eye-opening because although a writer is a writer, we're not running in the same circles, and there are different approaches. These seminars were organized by a group of Science Fiction and Fantasy authors (with one romance author as a speaker), and their roads to success take different paths than mystery and romance authors. We tend to measure our success by our Amazon rankings, or royalty checks, so meeting these "successful" people whom I'd never heard of (nor had they heard of me), was fascinating.
At any rate, the organizer of the three-day series of seminars was author Kevin J. Anderson, and I thought I'd share his Eleven Tips for Productivity with you. After all, no matter what genre we write in, we have to write the book.
And, as always with tips—use the ones that work for you. We're all different.
1. Shut up and write.
2. Defy the empty page.
3. Dare to be bad. (at first)
4. Know the difference between writing and editing. One's left brain, one's right brain. Do one or the other, not both at the same time.
5. Use every minute. Give yourself permission to write three sentences if that's all the time you have.
6. Set goals and stick to them.
7. Work on different projects at the same time. (My note: Anderson writes a tremendous number of books, in many series, often with co-authors. He also edits anthologies, so he'll have projects at various stages to bounce between if he gets stuck with one. I can't do this. One book at a time is my method)
8. Create your best writing environment.
9. Think outside the keyboard. Pens still exist. Anderson uses a digital recorder to dictate while he hikes. (My note: I use post-its for tracking and my very limited "plotting.")
10. Get inspired. Do stuff. Learn stuff. Since "write what you know" is what we're told, the more you know, the more you can write about.
11. Know when to stop. Don't keep polishing when the book is finished. Submit!
Terry Odell is the author of numerous romantic suspense novels, mystery novels, as well as contemporary romance short stories. Most of her books are available in both print and digital formats. She’s the author of the Blackthorne, Inc. series, steamy romantic suspense novels featuring a team of covert ops specialists, the Pine Hills Police series, set in a small Oregon town, and the Mapleton Mystery series, featuring a reluctant police chief in a small Colorado town. To see all her books, visit her website. You can also find her at her blog, Terry's Place, as well as follow her on Twitter, or visit her Facebook page.