1. Sovereign
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    Sovereign New Member

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    Starting out writing...

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Sovereign, Nov 21, 2012.

    Hello, guys! :D

    In my entire lifetime, I've probably read less than 20-25 books - mostly children's books and class assignment stuff and I barely bothered getting into English Arts (was mostly a math geek) because I just did not want to learn English/Literature Arts/Etc... and it just seemed so nerdy (no offense... I know, right? Coming from a math geek) at the time. It all seemed pointless and I just wanted to go through my homeschooling ASAP.

    Now that I'm in college and learning about making games/making art for games as well as creating stories, I've realized how interesting it is to read something that is engaging and fun to read and all of that got me wanting to write my own story ideas. However, I feel unprepared for such, especially since I seldom read any books and just recently made an account on a few writing forum boards, but isn't that why I came here? For advice? ;]

    I know this isn't something you can just pick up and do, but I'm just so interested in it.

    Anyway, I've been wanting to write something within the Sci-Fi genre and, funny enough, a book that I have recently finished was Republic Commando: Hard Contact by Karen Traviss - Star Wars stuff; big fan of it. This genre has been of most interest to me as of late and I want to learn how to go about making and writing a story within those lines.

    I wish to know what books to read/what to do to help prepare myself before doing something like this. What kind of stories to start out with. Short Stories? Novels? What?

    Thank you, in advance. :]
     
  2. Rooster
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    Rooster New Member

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    I believe this is something you can just pick up and do. Technically it might not be great but just putting words on paper (or pixels on screen) is the only way to start.

    Write a short story. no plan just an idea and let the characters take you in a direction. It may be rubbish but please dont stop. you will get better and change it a lot.

    You do need to read more as well. Choose similar genres to yours but dont always go for the big sellers. Self help books are all well and good but they cannot fire your imagination. they can help you technically but cannot invent characters and worlds. I find the best creative writing is in the initial moment, you need to go back and edit to make it technically correct.

    If you are wanting to write for fame and fortune then forget it. that rarely happens. Write a story for you not for a pay cheque.
     
  3. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Sure you can "pick it up and just do it" - who told you otherwise? That's how we all start - you're starting a little later than the rest of us, but that needn't necessarily disadvantage you at all.

    I started by rewriting stories that I liked - I wouldn't even change the story elements, I was literally just writing it out in my own words. That was when I was 8 or 9 and I'd just emigrated to England, so my English was terrible at the time. It was good practice in that sense. I refrained from really writing because I was embarrassed by my grammar - my mum just told me, "Who cares? You're doing it for fun."

    And so I started. Started banging on the keyboard - one of my first typed stories was on the discovery of an ancient ape man in a cave :D It was also one of the first times I used a computer to type, rather than to play games, so I was spending forever looking for each letter on the keyboard too, on top of writing in my second language - what I call my native language now (since my Chinese deteriorated rapidly - I stopped reading Chinese books and somehow I never thought to write prose in Chinese at the time. Everything was English.) As I got older, I started going to my school library and reading and reading and reading, and writing and writing and writing.

    Anyway, my advice for you would be - read everything that interests you, remember the little sentences and words that you think are well-used and try and use them in your own stories next time you write. And then sit down and start writing :) Remember, it's for your own pleasure, so who cares if it's not perfect? Just go for it! practice makes perfect, after all!
     
  4. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I would echo Mckk's advice to read whatever interests you, but if you want to write you will be best served by making sure you cast a wide net. Works that have been widely regarded over the generations have been for a reason. You will be doing your writing ambitions a favor by checking some of them out.

    Good luck.
     
  5. Langadune
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    Langadune Member

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    Read read read. Write write write. Everyone starts somewhere. Read everything with a critical eye. It helps to read things within your genre of interest, but anything in print can help develope your skills. Even the rubbish. Once you start reading with a writer's eye, you start noticing what works for you and what doesn't. Also, at the same time, write. Sit down and put your ideas on paper. Like Rooster said, it may be rubbish to you but that's part of being a writer. Your critical side critiques and you develop your skill. Keep everything your write and re-read it. You'll see yourself improving.

    Read. Write.

    Oh, and welcome to the forum!
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    check out lists of the 100 best novels / 100 best short stories of all time... start working your way through them...
     
  7. Sovereign
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    Sovereign New Member

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    Thank you all for your replies! Very much appreciated and I will follow them! :D
     

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