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Viewing blog entries in category: writing advice

  • Corbyn
    I find more and more that I have a problem focusing my attention. I think it has to do with habits. I feel like if I could establish a habit with regard to my writing, and just tasks in general... I might be more productive.

    Over the years this had proven difficult for me outside of my work environments. I also know that as a creature of habit, when I go outside of my routine it completely derails my whole day. Realizing this amuses me greatly. In the past, my work environment wasn't always conducive to routine, and more often than not things went sideways. But it amuses me because I thought those days of chaos were when I shined brightest.

    Even more amusing, and most importantly, I decided when I sat down today that I would write this as a way to focus myself and force myself back into a writing frame of mind. I've been struggling with getting any writing done yet again. I desperately need to break that cycle as I have projects that need to be completed.

    More important than that need is the realization that I NEED to be writing. I'm not content or even pleasant when I'm not writing. I'm short-tempered and I dislike the person I am when I don't have a creative outlet for all the miscellaneous crap that I deal with on the day-to-day.

    I wish I could say that my lack of focus was not limited to writing or creative pursuits. That would make me feel better about it, but that's not the case for me.

    So, how do I break the trend and push through this problem? As I sit here writing in the library across the street from my office, I have my headphones in, and I've been listening to the same song (on repeat) while I type. Sometimes this is enough. Sometimes just surrounding myself in a busy environment and forcing myself to put the headphones in and focus works wonders.

    I'm not a writer who thrives by writing at home and never have been. Why I keep forcing myself to try to be is ridiculous and I need to just go with what does the trick. And now I think I'm finally ready to tackle my short story.

    I wrote this as a focus exercise and thought the peek into my head and troubles might help someone else. Happy writing! -Corbyn
    CerebralEcstasy likes this.
  • Corbyn
    January brings with it a rush of promises made to ourselves and on behalf of those in our lives. For many of us, this is the year we're going to 'get our selves together", make that difficult change to live healthier, or do that thing we've been putting off.

    For me, the start of 2020 has been a time of deep reflection and introspection. Y'all, I'm not gonna front. 2019 didn't just kick my ass. It beat me like a red-headed stepchild that got caught with her hand in a cookie jar.

    I've talked in previous blog posts about growing up without support in creative endeavors and what it's like trying to build your tool kit and your confidence. 2019 did a bang-up job stripping me of what confidence in my writing I had, and much much worse.

    I can remember being about eight and watching my mom type away a business letter on this electric typewriter she had. This would have been in 1989 when home computers and pcs weren't a common thing to see in most southern homes. That typewriter was like this cool toy I never got to play with. I remember thinking then, how awesome would it be to write things people wanted, felt they needed to read?

    Fast forward a few years, and my grandmother won a pc through a work program, it was deliciously horrible in the graphics department, and I loved endlessly monkeying with the thing for school projects. One of my favorite excuses was the need to do homework on it. My grandmother always obliged me, and one of the first short stories I ever wrote was on that antique.

    In June of 2019, I rushed back to Texas after receiving word from my mom that my grandmother was admitted to ICU. It had been a year since I was back in the state, and then only for a few days. I made it and got to spend a few hours with her before turning in for the night. She had a good day while I was there. The next wasn't. I'll never forget the look on her face as she grabbed me, and begged me to call the rest of the family back and to let her go.

    I said goodbye to a lot of things in June, and the rest of the year felt like trying to come up and back from that. I've realized how far off course I've let myself get. There is a huge difference in working and productively working to make sure you're still striving for your goals. In 2019 I smashed every work goal I set for myself. I did not do so well with regard to my writing.

    So my goals for 2020 are not for a New Year, new me. I want to live healthier sure, but my goals are going to be geared toward finishing my projects, releasing content, and building my tool kit and confidence back up.

    I wish everyone a Happy, healthy, and productive year. Do something kind for someone today, and I'll see you all soon.

    Corbyn
    love to read and CerebralEcstasy like this.
  • Corbyn
    [​IMG]

    Hello, my fellow weirdos!

    I know, it's been a while. I wanted to take a moment to update this blog, and well, I missed all of you. I've been working on WIP's and social media for other people. Your right, excuses are like... well you know what.

    Anyway, today's blog is about keeping in touch with your reader. *Ahem* Something I need to work on. Why's it important? Is it all that important? Does your reader base care if you do it?

    The answer to all of those questions is a resounding yes.

    If you weren't sure about that or your thinking "But Corbyn, nobody cares whether I'm keeping in touch or not..." You're wrong. Just admit it now, or if you don't want to stick with me a bit longer, and hopefully I can change your mind about that.

    Sometimes as writers (especially Indy ones) we have to stop thinking of ourselves as writers, and instead, consider what we're trying to do from a business perspective. In business terms, if a company or entity isn't connecting with its consumers, they're less likely to buy that companies product. The same is true for us.

    If you've followed this blog, we've discussed before how building a reader base is like building a relationship with people. Take you and me for example. If you're here reading this, it's because you have an interest in what I'm saying. You want to know how to do something specific, or you want advice on a specific topic. It's the same for your reader.

    Building a relationship with a reader is promising them something (i.e., information or entertainment) in exchange for their support (reading). And now you're wondering what that has to do with touching base, am I right?

    The ultimate goal for a writer in building a readership is to have a mass of people to which they can market (you guessed it) their material. By interacting with your readership, you're helping to foster and cultivate that relationship. Relationships take work, even if it's just the promise between an author and their readers.

    So, as you can see taking the time to touch base with your readers isn't just important, it can be vital to a writers survival and success.

    As always, I hope you enjoyed reading this blog. If there is something you'd like to see me cover in a future blog please leave me a comment below. If you like my content, please don't forget to follow me here on the forum.

    Also, I can be found more frequently on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/korbynblakeauthor/

    I've been toying with posting some Facebook live feeds on current authors I'm reading, and how they are influencing my writing. Specifically how that influence is helping me pepper in world building info without info dumping. If it's a topic you might be interested in be sure to leave a comment, or you know... leave a comment anyway. I love hearing from you all.

    -Corbyn
    CerebralEcstasy likes this.
  • Corbyn
    [​IMG]

    Hello, my fellow weirdos!

    I know, it's been a while. I wanted to take a moment to update this blog, and well, I missed all of you. I've been working on WIP's and social media for other people. Your right, excuses are like... well you know what.

    Anyway, today's blog is about keeping in touch with your reader. *Ahem* Something I need to work on. Why's it important? Is it all that important? Does your reader base care if you do it?

    The answer to all of those questions is a resounding yes.

    If you weren't sure about that or your thinking "But Corbyn, nobody cares whether I'm keeping in touch or not..." You're wrong. Just admit it now, or if you don't want to stick with me a bit longer, and hopefully I can change your mind about that.

    Sometimes as writers (especially Indy ones) we have to stop thinking of ourselves as writers, and instead, consider what we're trying to do from a business perspective. In business terms, if a company or entity isn't connecting with its consumers, they're less likely to buy that companies product. The same is true for us.

    If you've followed this blog, we've discussed before how building a reader base is like building a relationship with people. Take you and me for example. If you're here reading this, it's because you have an interest in what I'm saying. You want to know how to do something specific, or you want advice on a specific topic. It's the same for your reader.

    Building a relationship with a reader is promising them something (i.e., information or entertainment) in exchange for their support (reading). And now you're wondering what that has to do with touching base, am I right?

    The ultimate goal for a writer in building a readership is to have a mass of people to which they can market (you guessed it) their material. By interacting with your readership, you're helping to foster and cultivate that relationship. Relationships take work, even if it's just the promise between an author and their readers.

    So, as you can see taking the time to touch base with your readers isn't just important, it can be vital to a writers survival and success.

    As always, I hope you enjoyed reading this blog. If there is something you'd like to see me cover in a future blog please leave me a comment below. If you like my content, please don't forget to follow me here on the forum.

    Also, I can be found more frequently on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/korbynblakeauthor/

    I've been toying with posting some Facebook live feeds on current authors I'm reading, and how they are influencing my writing. Specifically how that influence is helping me pepper in world building info without info dumping. If it's a topic you might be interested in be sure to leave a comment, or you know... leave a comment anyway. I love hearing from you all.

    -Corbyn
    CerebralEcstasy likes this.
  • Corbyn
    [​IMG]

    Hello minions! Did you miss me? No?!? Well, I missed all of you!

    Today's blog is something that hits close to home for me and on more than just one front. I bet you're wondering what the lovely stack of green stuff that most of us don't have has to do with knowing your worth right? Or better yet, why I felt the need to post the pic right?

    Self-worth and self-confidence are problems I've struggled with badly over the years.

    How does this matter or relate to writing Corbyn, and why do I care?

    You thought it, I know you did, and that's ok.

    If you follow this humble blog, then you know that I have periodically done some freelance ghostwriting. To date, I've written thirty-something articles that have found homes elsewhere, and about six shorts, and one full-length novel. I'm not bragging. This isn't that, though maybe I should brag... that's a different post altogether. My point is, I've become experienced in dealing with certain people where these type of assignments are brokered and let me tell you, it ain't pretty.

    Which brings me to the topic today. As a writer, it's important that you know your worth. Even if you're a novice like me, and don't feel like you can (or should) top bill people. Know your worth! It's not ok to let people low ball you or try to get away with not paying you for the services you offer.

    I had a potential client try this with me today. I'm proud to say that I stood up for myself. The client wanted me to write between 40,000 and 60,000 words on a novel, had no idea what the premise of the work should be, and the kicker... only wanted to pay me $250.00 for the work, and needed it in three weeks.

    Ummm. No. Not happening.

    If any of you have tried your hand at Nanowrimo, you know how difficult it can be to write 50,000 words in thirty days. It's doable, but it isn't pretty either.

    Last time I checked, I'm not a miracle worker. I could've tried it, but the whole thing was just laughably crazy. I politely told the client that I couldn't help her, and that I hoped she could locate a freelancer who would.

    Moral of the story, even though I want to write full time, and get paid for my writing, somethings are just better left undone.


    As always, I hope you enjoyed reading this blog. If there is something you'd like to see me cover in a future blog please leave me a comment below. If you like my content, please don't forget to follow me here on the forum.

    Also, I can be found more frequently on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/korbynblakeauthor/

    Where I post far funnier photos of all manner of interesting things like, you know, cats 'n stuff. Who doesn't love cats? This is the internet. Just sayin'.


    Happy writing!

    -Corbyn
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