I'd like to be a writer one day... But I'm not an avid reader, and I didn't even finish school.

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    Sep 19, 2012 12:27 PM GMT
    I like writing in my spare time, as a hobby.... But I was thinking, should I be aiming for maybe a published version of my work? I didn't do any English in school, so I'm all self taught. I feel like I have such great ideas, but no way to express them...
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    Sep 19, 2012 12:32 PM GMT
    Kristoff saidI like writing in my spare time, as a hobby.... But I was thinking, should I be aiming for maybe a published version of my work? I didn't do any English in school, so I'm all self taught. I feel like I have such great ideas, but no way to express them...



    Passion is more important than anything. That being said, it's difficult to paint a life-like portrait if you can't draw a straight line. Keep writing and take some classes in the mean time. You'll see your passion and confidence grow as you become more educated and sure of yourself. Having new tools at your disposal will also increase your creativity.
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    Sep 19, 2012 1:20 PM GMT
    I say..go for it..!!.. Scruffy made a point!.. Formal education on any level will only make you better ..!
    No the thing about not being a reader..I think you should change that..!
    Let me leave you with this...It's like never ever listening to music..then writing a song..!
    take some classes..Read more and best of luck!
  • AMoonHawk

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    Sep 19, 2012 2:01 PM GMT
    This is a case of just do it. Practice makes perfect. Read books on writing, there are ton of them out there so leaf through them a see if there is any information in them sparks your interest, before buying them. Then actually read them. You really should be an avid reader to become a good writer, so that you can see how writers handle certain styles. But don't immerse yourself into it too deeply as you can also stifle your creativity and start following step-by-step recipes.
  • HottJoe

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    Sep 19, 2012 2:34 PM GMT
    Everyone should write down their "great ideas." We're all unique individuals, and your perspective is one of a kind. When you die, your POV is gone forever--unless you've written it down.

    If you want to write professionally, however, keep in mind that you're competing with highly educated, avid readers who work hard on their craft every single day. If you're not competing at their level, you really don't have much of a chance.icon_wink.gif
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    Sep 19, 2012 3:14 PM GMT
    Kristoff saidI like writing in my spare time, as a hobby.... But I was thinking, should I be aiming for maybe a published version of my work? I didn't do any English in school, so I'm all self taught. I feel like I have such great ideas, but no way to express them...

    Well, you must have done SOME English in school, you're using it. You may not have focused on English, or taken extra courses, but surely the Australian schools you attended had basic English classes, yes?

    That really could be enough to get you started. If your RJ profile is any indication you have a kind of stream-of-conciousness style, which some authors have used to good advantage. Although for better readability in certain circumstances and for conveying information you might consider the power of the paragraph break.

    All you may need is to work with a good editor. His/her revisions could be adequate training for you, as you learn your craft by doing. That's how the American Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) learned to write, in a natural colloquial style that made him one of the first superstar writers of his era. Instead of using textbook examples of good writing, you're learning from your own words and ideas, which will resonate better with you and have more immediate practical application.

    Sometimes too much formal training can suffocate original talent, instead of showcasing it. I'm reminded of the Billy Crystal line from the comedy movie Throw Momma From The Train, when he plays a teacher telling his students how best to become good writers: "Remember, a writer writes always."

    You never stop writing, as the act of writing is itself a form of learning. It's a variant of the concept contained in an old vaudeville joke, when a man on the street stops another for directions:

    "Excuse me, sir, can you tell me how to get to Carnegie Hall?"
    "Practice, practice, practice."

    So if you write in your spare time you're doing it right. And submitting for publication might get you some instructive editorial review. Or if you can't get that far, try to enlist the help of someone who has some editing skills, perhaps a teacher or professor you know. And keep writing regardless.
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    Sep 19, 2012 3:23 PM GMT
    HottJoe saidEveryone should write down their "great ideas." We're all unique individuals, and your perspective is one of a kind. When you die, your POV is gone forever--unless you've written it down.

    If you want to write professionally, however, keep in mind that you're competing with highly educated, avid readers who work hard on their craft every single day. If you're not competing at their level, you really don't have much of a chance.icon_wink.gif

    This is true of all art. So many people seem to get surrounded by friends and family who are never honest about how little their talent really is, so instead of just giving up on that stupid dream (see American Idol candidates) people continue to do these public things that just go to show that a vast majority of artistic endeavors end in failure.
    Artists of all stripes spend almost every day working on their craft, it is not a hobby.
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    Sep 19, 2012 3:23 PM GMT
    I thought you wanted to be a graphic designer.
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    Sep 19, 2012 3:34 PM GMT
    There is absolutely no barrier to entry into the publishing world, these days. You can go to lulu.com, or createspace.com, or fifteen dozen other publishing companies and have your work ready to ship in a matter of hours. Upload the PDF file, choose a cover, select a price. Or even better, publish on an eReader. The process is painless. The royalties higher.

    As far as the quality of your writing, it looks like the 21st century is bringing about a radical change. It matters more WHAT you have to say than HOW you say it. The current best sellers on Amazon Kindle are mostly of sub-literary standard of writing, but they captured the imagination (or titillation) of the reader.

    Short version: if people know what you mean, it's good enough; if people are interested, they will read. The hardest thing, though, is finding what they want to read. Hint: sex and violence sell pretty reliably, especially in combination.

  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Sep 19, 2012 10:38 PM GMT
    HottJoe saidEveryone should write down their "great ideas." We're all unique individuals, and your perspective is one of a kind. When you die, your POV is gone forever--unless you've written it down.

    If you want to write professionally, however, keep in mind that you're competing with highly educated, avid readers who work hard on their craft every single day. If you're not competing at their level, you really don't have much of a chance.icon_wink.gif

    That's not true. I bought a book from Amazon that I though was going to be a gay adventure when I started reading it, it was page after page after page of porn. An not even any good porn at that. I was so pissed for the misadvertising of the author and the misrepresentation of what the book actually was.
    As any fyi it as Tripwire by Sean Michael ... I think all his books are probably exactly the same and he has tons of them out there.