5 Things I Learned From Classic Authors
Here are five things I learned about writing from reading about these authors, I hope you find some helpful writing tips in this post!
1. Make Use Of Your Experiences. Agatha Christie spent countless hours volunteering for The Red Cross during WWI, she ended up working in the hospital's dispensary. She began writing her first mystery at the time, and used her newly acquired knowledge of drugs in the story. And, a pharmaceutical journal commended her description of a that drug because it was so accurate.
2. Keep Trying. Jules Verne had been writing for well over ten years, and received many rejections from publishers before his work was published. But he kept at it. The world of adventure books would have been missing classics like Around The World In Eighty Days, and many others, had he stopped writing ,and ceased his efforts to be published. So don't get discouraged, your work might not have reached its full potential yet, or it just needs the right publisher; keep writing!
3. Be Ready To Learn. After a minor mistake about island plants in one of his books, R.M. Ballantyne would do meticulous research. Instead of simply reading about the things that happened in his books, he lived them. He would go aboard ships, spend time at a lighthouse, temporarily join the London Fire Brigade, travel to Algiers, Norway, and Cornwell, so he could write with authenticity. Ballantyne's example is a good one. Not all of us will be able to do that extent of investigation for our books, but we should certainly be ready to research our subject and learn all we can to make our writing better.
4. Consider Self Publishing.
Anthony Hope self published his first book, because it was not accepted at a traditional publishing house. It would have been costly, and who knows what kind of publicity he managed without Twitter and Facebook. However, that was in the late nineteenth century. Today, anyone with access to the internet, and the time and gumption can self publish, as well as handle their own publicity. It may not be your first choice, but this way of getting your book “out there” is extremely popular.
5. Write With A Goal In Mind. Near the end of his life, Sir Walter Scott became bankrupt. Determined that he would not die in debt, the author wrote furiously for years, churning out one novel after another. He succeeded in repairing his financial state with the money gained through his writing. What do we learn from this? Write a lot, and write purposefully. You may not need to avoid dying a debtor, but it certainly won't hurt you to be serious about writing.
What are some of the things you have learned from your favorite authors?