Monday, May 20, 2013

Best Of The Week for 5/20

A list of what I feel are the best writing articles or advice I've had the pleasure to read over the last week. They may not always have been written in the past week, but the past week is when I read them.

This weeks best of the week contains a lot of links about the lack of (racial) diversity in YA, I was doing a lot of research toward that myself.

Here is an entire tumblr devoted to diversity in literature, mostly YA

YA books need to reflect our diverse society:

Where are all the black boys?:

When Books Are Really Good, Despite Being Written For Teen:

Twitter Hashtags for Writers:

Salt Circle -Interview with Chuck Wendig :

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Best Writing Articles for the Week of 5/12/2013

A list of what I feel are the best writing articles or advice I've had the pleasure to read over the last week. They may not always have been written in the past week, but the past week is when I read them. A whole lot of social media talk this week.

* How to sell loads of books -,%20150526.0.html

* How To Maximize Your Word Count And Write More Every Day -

* Gangs of New Media: Twitchforks, the Hive Mind, and “Social Lasers of Cruelty” -

* Roundtable on News and Social Media -

* Social Media for Writers: A Kool-Aid Drinking Cult? -

This one isn't writing related per se but I know some writers deal with depression and this blog/comic hits the point well in my mind while also making me laugh:

* Hyperbole and a Half -

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Four tips for overcoming doubt from an OCD sufferer

Writer's seem to have a lot of self-doubt, even award winning New York Times best sellers experience it; that crippling feeling that often manifests as writer's block. I've had bouts of writers self doubt myself (Some bouts were so bad my mental state looked worse than Rocky after 15 rounds against Apollo Creed) but I'm uniquely adjusted to doubt, when I was a pre-teen I was diagnosed with OCD often called the "Disease of doubt", and have been living with it my entire adult life. I'm not going to go too deep into details about my OCD but if you are curious about the disorder Wikipedia's article on the matter is a good starting point:–compulsive_disorder

Living with OCD isn't fun, and I wouldn't choose it but it has forced me to develop certain skills, and dealing with self-doubt is a survival skill when you have OCD. So here are my four tips for dealing with self-doubt, that started as anti-OCD tricks and become writer's tricks. 

1.) Have an inspiration collection.

An inspiration collection is a collection of movie clips, quotes, web-pages, songs, and other stuff to go to that inspire you and motivate you personally, not stuff that simply inspired you to write what you are working on now but stuff that moves you as a person. Doubt in your writing ability is doubt in yourself, and you need to find the things that resonate in your core and get your engine roaring again.

I have quotes from famous philosophers to anime characters, and songs from across multiple music genres. Draw inspiration from whatever has meaning to you at the core of your being and return to it when you are in doubt.

One of my personal favorites is this Tv Tropes page: (Real life - Artists, Entrepreneurs and Scientists)

2.) Take a nap.

This may not always be possible but I've found a quick one-two hour nap can wipe away self-doubt better than a full night's rest.

3.) Push forward, regardless.

Sometimes the doubt is so crippling it makes it hard to even think about what to write, writer's block hits you hard. Sometimes the block is huge, getting over it seems impossible and ones inability to get over it throws them further into self-doubt. Sometimes the only way past writer's block and to go straight through it, push for more words however small, work that block away until there is nothing left but shavings. This goes for any profession or problem that's too big to simply hurdle over.

This is the one I have to use the most dealing with OCD myself,  sometimes you can't stop you just have to keep moving forward no matter what. There may be a massive block in your way,  looming over you. Your mind is racing and the anxiety won't stop but you just need to grit your teeth, plant your feet into the ground and start (metaphorically) beating on the block, bare-fisted if you have to.

4.) Talk to someone/vent.

Sometimes getting it off your chest to someone willing to just listen is very relieving, or just saying it aloud. Get that doubt out of just your head it's only going to bounce around and build momentum up there.

Seriously before writing this I tweeted out how I thought I wasn't going to write an article this week due to me having trouble sleeping and being tired,  but here I am a few hours later writing an article on overcoming self-doubt and finding inner determination.

Those are my four tips for over-coming self-doubt, I'm sure there are others without OCD who have learned these skills as well but I thought I'd share. So how do you overcome doubt?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Awakened Inspiralation Best of the Week

A list of what I feel are the best writing articles or advice I've had the pleasure to read over the last week. They may not always have been written in the past week, but the past week is when I read them. I apologize if the links are poorly formatted I haven't gotten a chance to play around with blogger yet.

 * The 3 Types of Character Arc – Change, Growth and Fall:

 * How To Write Fiction Without The Fuss: how to write a scene :

 * On The Subject Of The “Strong Female Character” :

 * 5 Tips that Doubled My Productivity Last Year :

 * YA Lit Really Screws Over Parents :

 * Writing Excuses 8.17: Microcasting (This is actually a podcast, but I'm a huge fan of it.)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The power of giving up?

This is is by no-means a singular event with me but, last night I was writing, pretty badly. I had been drawing a blank for like twenty minutes trying to get past a scene (and I don't skip scenes). I'd just begun get over the block, when my writing program refreshed itself for some reason, likely me hitting the wrong key in my rapid typing frenzy, I saw this and I just got so frustrated I said, "Fuck it, I'm done!"

(I'm pretty open gamer on twitter and in gaming this is known as a "Rage-Quit", something gets so
frustrating you quit; traditionally defined rage isn't actually needed.)

But with a single beat, I went from "Fuck it, I'm done!" to "Fuck that, I'm not going to let this
beat me." Twenty minutes later I'd hit my daily word count and written some of the best dialogue I
think I've ever written.

This is the power of giving up or more accurately the power of momentary giving. The level of stress
goes away, because you've quit for the day. Your head clears, the weight on your heart lessens, muscles un-tense, breathing steadies, what's stressing you fades but you aren't really giving up;
You're hitting your personal reset button.

I see this in gamers all the time, they say they're quitting. The controller gets loose in their
hands, they reach for the off button; but they don't hit it sweaty palms re-grip the controller and
their eyes shift. With fires of determination reignited within them, they lean back and hit restart

Though I'm sure all professions have this, fuck; I'm pretty sure this is just a part of human
nature. We feel like nothing is working so we let go a bit, but vision is harder to let go of then our frustrations, and when our frustrations fade our vision clears and we push on ahead.

That's just my thoughts on the matter though. What are yours? I'd love to hear them in the comments down below.