New Stories And Uncertainty

I’m currently working on a new novel, or at least, what I hope will become one. I have to be honest though and say that I’m not feeling as confident about this book as my other two. I keep wondering if what I have planned is enough to be made into a successful story. Is the plot good enough? Is the story idea fresh enough? Is it something readers would really want to sink their teeth into? So many questions are swirling around in my mind.

A part of me really likes the story idea and I feel that if I can write it well enough, then it’ll be successful. However, I do have doubts – I’m not above admitting that.

I don’t think I’m ready to give up on the idea quite yet though. In fact, I still like the idea quite a bit. I just need to really start diving into the story, after all I don’t have that much written yet. Also, there’s nothing wrong with me asking those I trust for their opinions, which I plan on doing.

I’m writing this post to tell you that it’s okay not to be 100% confident when writing something new – it doesn’t make you a bad writer or mean that your story isn’t up to snuff. All it means is that you’re human and that writing something good means so much to you, that you want to do a good job. While doubting in your abilities to write something extraordinary is never a good thing, caring that your work will turn out how you want it, is. As writers, we should want our writing to be something we’re proud of.

Remember that you are a talented writer. Look at your previous work and remind yourself that the wonderful words that you see came from your creativity. Trust your instincts and have faith in your abilities. Don’t give up on your story right away if you have some doubts, work with it for a while. If you still don’t like it, then you can work on something else, but don’t let temporary uncertainty make you question your talent as a writer.

Writing Tips: Powering Through

If you’re a writer, you’ve undoubtedly come across the problem of getting stuck. You know, when you’re writing along and everything is smooth sailing until all of a sudden, you don’t know what to write next? You try to continue on, but right then and there, nothing comes to mind. So, you do the wise thing and you step back, giving yourself a break.

While giving yourself a much needed break is most likely the right thing to do, we have to be careful not to let that short break extend itself into a long period. Sometimes the longer we wait to continue a story, the less likely it is that we’ll ever finish or have the same momentum that we would have had if we got back to writing the story sooner.

Sometimes after taking a short break, the best thing to do when writing is to just power through. Spend some time thinking of what to write and work through the writer’s block. It may not be easy, but it is possible. I’m not saying to put too much pressure on yourself or to just write out of the sake of writing (that most likely won’t end well), but I am suggesting that you think of ideas and WRITE! There are always going to be times when you’re writing and things get a little prickly and start moving a little slower. The worst thing you can do during these times is to give up on the story (if you’re happy with it is, that is) or to just step away for a while and never return.

So here is my advice: if you feel stuck and don’t know exactly what to write next, take a few days to just think about where you want to go with the story and how you want to write it. Try not to worry too much. After a few days of thinking, get back to work and try to power through!

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Thoughts On Writing: Word Limits

I’m not a fan of word limits – at least not when I’m writing my own stories. I understand that if an employer or teacher asks you to, you need to follow their limits, but otherwise I think you should write until the story tells you it’s finished.

As many of you know, I’m putting together a collection of short stories. I mentioned in a recent post, that according to the internet, some of my shorter stories are actually considered ‘novellas’. I understand the need to set labels on these things – how else would professional magazines and literary agents work with writers? – but at the same time, I think that too many labels make things more complicated than they need to be.

I’m not going to limit my short stories to what the internet defines as ‘short’. I’m going to write the story how I want and if I feel that it’s short enough to fit into my collection, I will place it with the other stories. In fact, I’m planning on titling the short story book and then putting ‘a collection of short(er) stories’. I don’t necessarily think a person needs to do that, but at least my readers will know what to expect.

When in school, I was never a fan of word limits. I understand that these assignments were to challenge the writer and to teach that in some writing positions, you will need to learn to limit yourself. I completely understand this and as I said, when being employed, you must respect this. If your employer pays you to write within certain limits, you should do it and do it well. If a teacher asks you to write within their limits for a paper or project, then you do so. These are different circumstances.

For yourself, however, and for your readers, write until you feel satisfied with the story. Don’t rush it or cram your thoughts into what is the defined ‘short story’ just because you might be putting together what you call a ‘collection of short stories’. Write until it feels right!

You are the one that needs to be proud of your work. Wouldn’t you rather not label something exactly as the internet says is the ‘right way’ rather than sacrifice your talent as a writer just to fit into a boxed definition?

If you want to call a ‘novella’ a short story, then go for it (unless of course you are writing for a company that demands you label the story under their definitions). If you want to call a ‘novella’ a story, then go for that to. Do what feels right to you!

 

Writing: So Many Ideas!

So as I mentioned in a couple of posts, I’m currently working on writing a story. My ultimate hope and plan is to combine a number of short stories into a collection!

I am very happy to say that I already have another story idea in mind in addition to the one I’m currently writing. The crazy thing is that my ideas for the story I haven’t started yet are intense. I’m super excited to get started on the new story and haven’t even finished the one I’m currently working on!

I think it’s super amazing that my ideas are flowing the way they are. For a while, I felt stumped and wasn’t sure that I’d come up with another good story after Rest in Piece. I’m really proud of my accomplishment of publishing my first book and I didn’t want my good writing to end there. Now I can hardly contain myself!

At first, I planned on just finishing the story I’m currently working on (which I’m also excited about), but then I decided that I’m going to start writing the other one as well. The ideas are fresh and who wants to lose something as wonderful as a fresh, exciting concept!

So my point is this: if you find yourself exceptionally excited about a story, WORK ON IT! Work on it when you feel like you’re in the mood for releasing your creativity! If you’re working on another story at the same time and still love the idea of the current one, DON’T STOP working on that one! Write them both when you feel it’s a good time!

How about you guys? Any writing projects in the works?

Rest in Piece Photo Contest!

Attention Readers:

Have you purchased either the e-book version or paperback copy of my new book, Rest in Piece? Would you like to display your copy of Rest in Piece in a creative way and maybe win a contest to show your creativity and help me get the word out about my work? If so, you can send me an image of your copy of Rest in Piece creatively displayed or you can post it on your blog and let me know about it. I will check out your picture and then select a winner based on creativity! Your creative image will be displayed with all the contestants’ AND  I will also design an award for you on PicMonkey if you win! Winning such an award would be a great way to show just how creative you are!

The Rules:

  • If you’re someone who already has my email address and has purchased my book, send a photo of you creatively displaying your book to my email.
  • If you don’t have my email address and you can, send me the picture via the ‘Contact’ page on either my Rest in Piece blog or my Getting Through Anxiety blog.
  • If you do not wish to use either above methods of getting your picture to me, feel free to post the picture on your blog and paste a link in the comment section of this post so that I can view your picture.
  • UPDATE AS OF 3/24/17: To make things easier, in addition to these methods, feel free to post photos for the contest on your Instagram page. Let me know on my Instagram at b.w.ginsburg48 if you will be participating by using this method so I can check out your photo.
  • DO NOT email or post any pictures that can be deemed as inappropriate. I will not post these on my blog and they will surely not be eligible to win.
  • The expiration date for this contest is April 28th 2017. Please make sure to submit your entry before this date.
  • Have fun and be creative!

For more information, feel free to contact me through the contact page on either my Rest in Piece book blog or Getting Through Anxiety. Or you can simply ask any questions in the comment section of this post. GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF THE CONTESTANTS!

To purchase a copy of Rest in Piece visit: Amazon.com.

Special thanks goes out to everyone who has supported my writing.

You Know You’re Creative When…

A fun post on how you know that you’re creative!

You know you’re creative when…

1.) You have highly imaginative dreams during the night

2.) You come up with great story ideas

3.) You’re observant

4.) You’re highly curious about things

5.) When you come up with a good line, paragraph, etc. for a story or poem, you feel the need to write it down right away – even if you’re trying to sleep!

6.) You think of things maybe no one else would

7.) You think of things in different lights

8.) You love to read and write!

AND SO MUCH MORE!

What about you? What makes you feel creative?

 

Ideas – How To Come Up With Them

Chances are that if you love to write, you’ve found yourself sitting near a notebook or in front of a computer screen, feeling like you’ve wanted to write but having no clue what to write about. I think we’ve all been there and can all admit that the feeling stinks! Our fingers are itching to type or write and all we can do is stare at the blank piece of paper or screen and stare. It’s incredibly annoying! We know we’re talented and yet at that very moment, we feel ridiculously useless. In reality, though, we have tons of great ideas – we just have to dig a little and bring them to the surface.

People always say to write what you know. Let’s face it though, sometimes that’s boring. I mean, isn’t a big part of writing and reading being able to escape either the stressful or mundane? Who wants to write about something that makes them uncomfortable or something that they do every single day of their lives? I know that I don’t. However, at the same time, there is something to that piece of advice. Here’s what I mean.

I don’t think it’s necessarily writing about what we do or know that’s the key, but rather thinking about things that we’ve seen in a different light. There are tons of things that may seem boring to us at first glance, but if we really think about them, we can make them quite interesting and turn them into something much more intriguing.

Think about it. Have you ever seen something that really frightened you but you couldn’t figure out why? Maybe when you were younger and you saw shadows you thought they looked like scary wolves or vampires. You may think to yourself, “That was just my imagination as a child, we all go through that!”. Why not make it into something else though? Why not write a story about shadows that really turn into those scary images? Why not make it a horror story instead of just a child’s overactive imagination?

That’s the beauty in writing – nothing has to be ordinary! You have the power as a talented writer to make something out of seemingly nothing! You just have to use that creativity that was bestowed upon you. You don’t have to give in to writer’s block – you can fight it!

Good Luck With Your Writing!

-B.W. Ginsburg

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