Saturday, January 1, 2011

A New Year's Resolution for Writers

Writers write.
We've all heard and read this so many times, it has probably ceased to mean anything, but nonetheless, it's true. Actors will find a way to act, painters will find a time and place to paint, and writers do, in fact, write! One of the best things about being a writer is the simple fact of being able to do it almost anywhere...and almost anytime (even when pen and paper are not handy--one can always THINK about one's story, setting, or characters!) unlike most artists, who require studios, orchestras, or productions companies.
So, for 2011, make a promise to yourself to write--no, it doesn't have to be every day, and it doesn't have to be work on a project with a date-specific deadline, or even a goal. Just write. Enjoy the process.
For those who need encouragement--and who, among us does not, at times--here are two encouraging groups that can set you on course, and teach you a course, as well.
Regular readers may remember my recommending the Southern California Writer's Conference before, but it's worth repeating. The next conference happens February 18-21st here in San Diego, and the lineup of authors, agents, editors, and workshop leaders is very impressive, as always. (Full Disclosure: I'm on staff and have been for years, but I'd recommend you go whether I was there teaching a workshop or not). The 25th anniversary conference this year promises to be a special and inspiring one--but no doubt fun and laugh-filled!
Another great local (San Diego) resource is San Diego Writer's, Ink which is a wonderful, warm, giving community of writers and teachers (who are all published writers and really know the ins and outs of what they teach).
Of course, no mention of resolutions for writers would be complete without this brief directive--keep reading great writing while you are working on your own books or stories or notes for future works. The rule holds: Good in, good out, and that's nowhere more true than with writers. That doesn't mean you have to read Literature at all times, but don't waste your time with junk, either. There are plenty of good writers writing in all genres of fiction and non-fiction--if you're in doubt, drop by your favorite bookstore or neighborhood library this week and do some looking. I love to look in the new fiction and new nonfiction to start with, but I often end up buying or checking out a classic, too.
That's all for now, I've got to save some time to write today--how about you?
Happy New Year--and hasta pronto!