By Nicole Klunder
That was what the past week taught me.
How do I get past this plateau of becoming a better writer? I asked myself this question over and over.
Then, I recently decided to get involved with a couple critique groups and attended their presentations to further my skills. I mentioned my feelings toward submitting even a page of my work. I asked questions as a new writer, and then suddenly became a reader for critiquing within the groups I have chosen to join. I have already learned so much!
I have not submitted anything yet.
But that’s okay!
My writing journey started 2 years ago. I was home for an extended period, and I started reading again. I quickly realized how much I missed it. I also took a trip to the bookstore and picked up a book called Complete the Story by Piccadilly, full of writing prompts. At the same time, I started journaling in The Artist Way Morning Pages Journal by Julia Cameron.
Every single day.
Find courage to take a leap—whether it be starting or continuing what you are pursuing.
Dedicate time to my new passion daily, enjoy the journey, process, and progress.
How I “SHOWED UP” as a fragile new inexperienced writer.
1. Read a lot and watch movies
All genres that interest you. Maybe dip into a genre you are curious about or never read and check out a variety of authors to experience their word choices. I recently touched on poetry and was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed it.
2. Join a critique group
Join one or a few groups and submit work or just participate as read only to start. The encouragement received is exponential! I also hear that your writing skills can improve tremendously. Include yourself in any presentations for adding what you have learned to your toolbox. Take lots of notes! You might need them later or at a completely different time. This also gives you accountability partners without realizing it!
3. Buy a writing journal
It can help you set goals for the week, help with what you want to accomplish and what is realistic to your schedule. It keeps you on track whether its daily, weekly, or monthly. Some of them include exercises and prompts (The Authors Accountability Planner 2022).
4. Read books on writing
Most known authors sell writer books to teach you from grammar to specialized thesauruses to plot and character creation, and so on (James Scott Bell has great reference books and On Writing by Stephen King).
5. Writing exercises/prompts
This gets your juices flowing. It can also be inspiration for a new story, digging deeply into your creativity and something might strike you, unexpectedly!
I want to inspire others, no matter what you write to move forward on your journey. Enjoy it, learn a lot, ask questions, put yourself out there, ask the why’s, and above all, “Just Write!”
“I think new writers are too worried that it has all been said before. Sure it has, but not by you!” – Asha Darndest
GMC (Goal, Motivation & Conflict)—Every story book and movie has it. Figure them out!
Creating character depth-3 dimensional—Is key!—said by Kandi Steiner, a Tampa based new adult romance indie author. If you have not read her, I highly suggest you do because her words are amazing and addictive!
Conflict, conflict, conflict—Without it, there is no story.
Editing—Where the magic is created.
Deeper POV—A book that helped me tremendously with this is “Fiction Editing Tools. Expressions & Emotions. Learn how to expand your creativity through a deeper POV” by S.A. Soule.
Tropes—Fun ways to add a little extra to entice the reader.
Just write—Yes, just write! Write anything because ultimately that’s how you get better.
LIVE! Live your best life to have something to write about!
Now, get to work!
About the Author
Nicole Klunder is originally from Long Island, New York. In 2007, her and her husband of 17 years decided to embark on an adventure and move out to the west coast for the warm sunny climate and an outdoor lifestyle.
If she is not working at her day job or freelancing as a makeup artist in the bridal industry, you can find her on her downtime enjoying the gym, pole fitness, hiking, traveling, skiing, camping, and hitting the bike trails with her husband anywhere in the mountains.
On her personal free time, she loves healthy cooking including recreating recipes, watercolor painting, drawing, and sketching, reflective journaling, reading mostly romance but open to anything to inspire her and her most passionate project, writing fiction. From a new short story to stories she is working on, to simple prompts and exercises or journaling, she dedicates time to her new passion. Every single day! Because that is what it takes for success!