Writing Advice from Max Brooks

advice for writing

Writing advice will never ever go out of style. It’s always trendy. That’s because writers will always need a lot of encouragement and coaxing. Don’t mind them; Big babies.
Anyways, Max Brooks, author of World War Z had some words of wisdom-

1. Just do it. Writing, like anything, takes practice and discipline, and I’ve found that discipline comes from a lifetime of repetition. I started writing when I was 12 and it’s made the action as normal as any other activity.

2. Drafts. Nothing is more intimidating than a blank page. Writing in drafts helps to diffuse some of that pressure. My rough draft has one goal; to write “The End.” I have the next 200-300 drafts to make it good.

3. I always write for me. I write what I want to read. I have no idea what will be popular, but if it’s a story I like, at least I can guarantee that it’ll have one fan.

4. I’m very careful who I let proofread my unfinished work. Too often people will want to rewrite the entire story or take it in a direction I never intended. Vetting proofreaders over time allows me to find eyes and brains that want to help me get where I originally intended to go.

5. I married the right person! That’s the most important tip I can give to any artist. It’s hard out there, unpredictable, distracting, and, at times, heartbreaking. My wife knows me better than I know myself and is critical in keeping my mind and heart on the right track. Without her as my battle-buddy, who knows where I, and my work, would be.

This is the first time I’ve agreed with a person’s opinions, a hundred percent.

Not to become a repetitive chorus, I’ve blogged about some of his points already:

Number one is similar to this post. I blogged about number two recently.

Number three is something I have been practising for the past two months. I write what I love reading. That doesn’t mean I dont challenge myself. Afterall, my most recnt short story is about a newly wed couple going through money troubes but with a fantastical twist. I’m not too big on the relationship aspect of stories but the story is shaping up really nicely. Not only am I excited about each story I now write but fresh ideas don’t seem to relent.  Note taken.

Number four…. Aargh! I’m sure it’s a massive club where we go to scratch out our hair and yell obscenities when well-meaning beta readers try to “improve” our work by offering plot directions. No. Just no. Don’t give your story to just anybody. Let it be to people who get it and appreciate the genre.

Number five. In a few months, I’ll marry the love of my life. Hopefully. She already gets me and my ideas (mostly) so, Homerun for me!

Have a great weekend folks.

Max Brooks tips taken from Publishers Weekly here.

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3 thoughts on “Writing Advice from Max Brooks

  1. Ah! Few months…of course that’s all I saw.

  2. What Nkoyo said. *passing by* and oh knowing you, i’m glad i do not have to worry about aso-ebi and all that fuss. Yes? say yes o. bye!

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