4.9 things writing teaches: a guest post by Don Rearden

Don Rearden grew up on the tundra of Southwest Alaska, and once slept next to a seal. His debut novel The Raven’s Gift will be flying off Canadian shelves in 2011.

1. Be passionate. Write because you love stories, characters, images, words. Don’t write for others, and don’t write with dreams of big checks and star treatment. Write because you love surprises and because you relish the euphoria of unleashing your creativity.

2. Write. Words, words, words – unfortunately they don’t write themselves. What distinguishes real writers from dreamers is that writers are constantly capturing their dreams on paper while the dreamers spend their time dreaming and talking about what they are “working” on. If you really are a writer, get writing.

3. Find a mentor. Writing is a solitary and often lonely prospect. Find readers you trust, but seek out writers you respect and learn from them.

4. Be a mentor. Use your skills as a writer and reader and share them with young writers. They will learn from you, and if you’re a good mentor, you’ll learn just as much from them.

4.9 Alaska. Show me a better muse. In terms of states, we are fortunate. She is rich in history, culture, wildlife, geography, and characters. Be a student of the 49th state, learn from Alaska, eat, sleep, and breathe this amazing place — get out in the weather, meet the people, and listen to the land.

2 thoughts on “4.9 things writing teaches: a guest post by Don Rearden”

  1. Lynn Lovegreen

    Lots of good points here–one of my favorites is the idea that you have to write, not just talk/dream about it.

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