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Creative Writing Hints

Here are some creative writing hints, also known as bite-sized bits of wisdom that you may be able to apply to your writing. Some of these tiny tips may be about writing technique while others will focus more on keeping motivated to write. Enjoy!

Creative Writing Hints

1. Write every day no matter what (including holidays).

2. Show your first book to people incapable of criticism. Show all subsequent books to those who are incapable of lying.

3. If you can't find an agent or a publisher, get self-published.

4. If you get self-published, hire an editor and a cover designer.

5. Write about things you like thinking about.

6. If you can't think of something to write about, flip through your high school yearbook.

7. If you can't stop thinking of ideas, pick one and roll with it. No writer has ever won an award for "Most Ideas."

8. Adding exercise to your life improves health and writing ability.

9. Back-up your files at least every two weeks.

10. If you're scared to write something, you must write it.

11. Set writing goals for yourself to improve productivity. Set reading goals to improve creativity.

12. Pull inspiration from everything: your kids, your spouse, your location, your past and your parents.

13. Change the names, descriptions and genders so they don't find out.

14. Read your writing out loud to catch errors and to understand it better.

15. Writers don't have to be miserable and tortured. It's a myth created by happy successful writers to sell more books.

16. Don't judge yourself by the success of other writers. Pretend you are in a vacuum and then keep releasing work until you get lucky.

17. Finish your first draft of a book at all costs. Don't give up, because even the classics of literature had crappy first drafts. Writing is re-writing.

18. Free publicity beats paid advertisements.

19. Part of writing is selling yourself. If you write a book, make sure to tell people about it, it typically won't sell itself.

20. Learn as much as you can about writing, but don't change your style to fit what's popular. The way you write now may be the latest rage next year.

21. Celebrate every small milestone in your writing career, but save the big party for the book launch.

22. Use Twitter, Facebook and e-mail to recruit people who love your book.

23. Writer's block doesn't exist. Breathe, take a walk around the block, do some dishes or have a snack and you'll notice it has miraculously vanished.

24. You will probably not make a living off of writing alone, so don't quit your day job.

25. If you do, quit your day job. 

I hope you enjoyed these creative writing hints. For a collection of 30 essays worth of creative writing hints, check out my book Sharpening the Pencil: Essays on Writing, Motivation and Enjoying Your Life

Done with Creative Writing Hints? Go back to Creative Writing Tips. 

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Written by Bryan Cohen

Bryan Cohen is the author of more than 30 books, many of which focus on creative writing and blasting through that pesky writer's block. His books have sold more than 20,000 copies. You can find him on and Facebook.

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