We're going to move away from the Author Platform now and talk about How to be a better novelist.
I read a great article on turning writer's envy into inspiration and wanted to share a few of the highlights with you in this post.
We've all been there, reading the most amazing, inspiring text and wishing we could be even so much as half as good, then realising with that horrible sinking feeling that we're never going to reach that high bar. It's simply not attainable to us.
But stop right there! You're allowed a marginal amount of wallowing in self pity before you pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get back to your craft.
Don't let envy eat away at you!
Yes, it's a natural emotion, but why not harness its energy and turn it to your advantage?
Everybody has a unique voice and you shouldn't try to write in a voice that isn't your own. By all means follow the market trends and advice, however stay true to your originality and stay true to your instincts.
I strongly believe you can't be taught to write - you've either got the flair for it, or you haven't - but you can be taught to write better and hone those natural, inbuilt skills.
Writing isn't a race or competition either. I personally see it as more of a journey - a journey only for me. People will always try to measure your success with how many book sales you've made blah blah blah, but I reach the pinnacle of my success when I finish writing the story. It's all to do with how you feel about your achievement, not how other people feel about it. Manage your expectations of yourself.
Finally, study the work that inspires you and learn the techniques these writers use to capture the scene, the emotion, the whatever it is that's gripping you. I'll often dig out different books when I'm writing this scene or that scene so I can embrace the greatness of the writer and try to apply it to my own writing.
Strive to be better at what you do, but for gawd sake don't waste time beating yourself up!
Remember this definition of success from Maya Angelou: Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.
Blogging is an amazing concept so here I am giving it a whirl. You'll get words. You'll get pics. Sometimes a vid or two. You'll get tongue in cheek, the odd humble opinion and an honest insight into my travels and writing life. Maybe even a few gems along the way. I'll be musing on home turf as I see more and more of the UK and sharing my experiences further afield on holidays and adventurous trips across the globe.