You Learn to Write by Writing
There are not many things which can be said about art which remain true is almost every case, except this one. You learn to write by writing. For me and for thousands of others who have come before and after, there is no other way.
Writing is an art form and it is perhaps the truest forms of expression available to us as human beings. Since it is a form of art, treat it as such. Practice and learn how so you can forge books from the ideas in your mind. This Online Writing Workshop provides the tools to help.
- Writing Tools and Lessons
- Online Classes and Videos
- Workshops and Templates
- Story Prompts
- Self Evaluation guide
Free Writing Materials
How to Write a Fantasy Novel:Introduction to novel writing.
Lecture Series | ARK Writer
Learning to Write
The best way to learn how to write is by writing. Open the Master Writers Toolbox and start building your story today.
So you want to be a writer….
If you’ve found this page, welcome. You’re in the right place and if you will indulge the ideas presented in this introduction to our Writers Workshop, you will gain an understanding of how possible writing a book actually is. We’re going to pull back the shades and show you things which for some strange reason seem shrouded in mystery.
Still with us? Great!
So you want to be a writer and this desire has probably been stirring within you for as long as you can remember, like a thorn in your side or a burr in your sock. The dream of holding your finished book in your hands, of sharing it with the world, and receiving the personal satisfaction of having completed something most people who try never do.
My name is Austin Colton, and I am unrealistically neive, mentally unstable, and driven with the stubbornness of a mule. The socially acceptable and coined term for my condition is deemed Artist and Writer. Names which my vanity accepts with a wide smile.
Plenty of people want to write a book. But of the estimated 20 percent of the population that has this desire, only 5 percent of these ever start. To better understand how small that number truly is, we’ll start with a group of a hundred different people. Twenty of them will want to write a book but only 1 will start. Now if you take 20 of those who start, only 1 of them will finish that book. This means if you take a group of 400 people who want to write a book, one of them will finish their book. The simple act of typing in your last word means you have accomplished what only 0.25 percent of the population ever does.
I began to dream up stories early on in my life, as early as the age of six. That is when little me decided I would write a book someday. Of course I tried time and time again to write, never getting further than a chapter or two, but I was young and had a lot of living and learning to do. At the age of sixteen, I decided that I would try writing a book; and I got far. That book still remains unfinished, but the ideas and lessons I learned have made their way into other works which have grown beyond the simple ideas of that story. At the age of twenty, I finished my first book. Four years of working and I crossed the first big milestone of my journey; little did I know or understand what accomplishment I had already made in doing so. The road ahead still looked so long and rocky, I looked to the ground and trekked ahead.
Author Neil Gaiman compared the journey to a mountain. Everything you do, the choices which make up our daily lives, either move us closer to or further from the mountain. If the peak is the end goal, the place you wish to be the most, you will have a long trip ahead of you. Even Everest, the tallest mountain in the world can be climbed. So can the one standing between you and your dream.
Creative Writing is different than Academic Writing
We learn to read and write at an early age and through years of schooling and academic training, we write countless essays on nonfiction works or analytical examinations of cherry picked fiction which is considered worthwhile for young students to learn the concepts of writing.
Being a fiction writer is different and to develop writing skills and bring your ideas together in order to form a story, you will need to set aside several aspects of your academic writing instruction which will prove detrimental to your progress.
Why is creative writing different? Understanding this answer begins with gaining a basic knowledge of how our brains function. Our brains are divided into the left brain and the right brain. The left brain is analytical and methodical, this is the side of the brain that academics is based on and relies heavily on. The right brain is creative and artistic. This is where your ideas for stories come from. Writing creatively means using the right side of your brain, the creative side, while ignoring the left or analytical side. Most people have spent years being trained only how to write analytically. This form of writing makes creating a book impossible.
If you spend all your time worrying about the words, let your analytical brain into the creative process early on, it will shut you down and keep you from finishing. This is a problem and if you don’t believe me, look at your own experience and figure out why you only made it a few pages or chapters into that one story you set out to write before putting it down because it wasn’t good enough or because you were afraid of what to do next.
Setting aside Writing Time
The trick with writing is learning to work smarter, not harder. Sitting down to write is often the hardest part about being a writer which is rather ironic when taken into consideration. It might be the frustration of not being able to get your ideas onto the page or perhaps the feeling that it must be perfect drives us into a dark lonely cell of insanity which demands we do not write until the words flow from us perfectly.
Overcoming Fear and Resistance
Fear is the biggest killer of creative writing. This fear exists inside all creative minds and presents itself as a force of resistance.
You may be familiar with names such as writer’s block, Its goal is to keep you from writing at all costs. What causes this? Why does it happen to us when writing is what we love to do? But most importantly, how do you overcome it?
The answer to this question once discovered is the first step towards becoming a professional. You can not make a career without writing and the more you write the better you get. Learn how to overcome resistance and develop the determination to succeed.
Stop excusing yourself for not doing what you would like to have done. If you want to be a writer and you are not writing, you need to take a long hard look at yourself, what you are doing, and determine where you need to change.
The most important part of writing isn’t knowing how to string a few words together to form a sentence. It’s developing the discipline to sit down in a chair, place your hands on the keyboard, and force yourself to work.
If you delay writing until the divine inspiration of the gods to strikes, or for your muse to take hold and push you into a story, or the crazy daemon that lives under your bed to drag you to your desk, you will never be a writer.
Artists live for the moments of inspiration where things come together without effort and seem to flow from us like a mountain spring. But they come only occasionally and are rewards for the true work we do day in and day out. Your rewards in writing are like your rewards in life; that is that your rewards are equivalent to your contribution or service.
The Online Writing Workshop
This Writing workshop is designed to provide lessons and tools for writers who are interested in writing creatively regardless if it be short or long, fiction or nonfiction. You don’t have to be an aspiring novelist to benefit from these tools, so whether you want to write a memoir for yourself, self publish for a small community, or try your hand at the big leagues, subscribing to our online workshop will help.
This online writing workshop is designed to assist you at any skill level and can take you from the basics to advanced techniques and strategies. The wonderful thing about writing is that there is no right way to tell a story. There are as many ways to write a story as there are writers. It comes down to finding the strategies and tools that help you, and using them to finish that book. When everything else is all said and done, the most important thing of all is completing your story, typing in that last glorious phrase “The End” and sharing it with others. Austin’s Writing Workshop will help you.