The Write Arsenal
by Barbara Shepherd
Once you tell people you’re a writer, you see wide eyes and a big smile. Then you always hear these seven words: “I’ve always wanted to write a book.”
1. Facts and Figures
Did you know that wishful statement is true for about 80% of the people we encounter on a daily basis?
According to successful Christian novelist, Susan May Warren, “20% sit down to write; 5% actually finish a book; and only 1% see their book published.”
Why is that? They were excited at first but may have decided it was “work” or let too many things interrupt their process. How do we join that 1% group? Now that we have POD and self-publishing opportunities, our books can see the light of day. But here’s the caveat: Most of the self-published, or Indie-published, books have been poorly edited, or not edited at all, and many are difficult to read due to improper formatting.
2. Where to get help?
Conferences, workshops, and retreats can help us finish large works – fiction or non-fiction. Qualified speakers and interaction with other writers provide knowledge we can put to use and encouragement, showing us how to leap over hurdles standing in the way of our success.
Recommended retreat and conference events coming in 2017: SCBWI-OK in Tulsa in March, Called to Write in Kansas in April, OWFI in Oklahoma City in May, Fiction Writers Retreat in June in Midwest City, and Rose State’s Short Course in Writing in Midwest City in September. Start saving now. Let friends and family members know they can contribute to your “Writing Fund.”
3. Tax Reminder
Speaking of funds, tax season is here. Per the IRS, business mileage for Schedule C for 2016 was 54 cents. Planning ahead: Business mileage decreases to 53.5 cents for 2017.
4. Writing Prompt
Use a prompt as a warm-up exercise. Write for five minutes without stopping.
Use the following three words:
Tiger / Purple / Seashore
Happy writing to you!