Sunday, August 21, 2011
I wish I knew the answers to all the questions that writers have about their craft. I'd be a rich man. You'd see ads about me appearing as the keynote speaker at writers conferences around the world.
I'd be on the cover of Poets & Writers, Writer's Digest and The Writer. Hey, I would probably show up in the New York Times Review of Books, Time and Newsweek as this Kentucky sage who commands attention from writers everywhere. Oprah would find out about me and ask me to host a show about writing on her network. Since I'm don't hold a doctorate like Dr. Phil, how about "The Write Way with Michael" or something catchy like that?
I'd be a rock star in the writing community.
But, alas, I'm just one of millions who simply enjoy writing, sharing words with others, and occasionally having a published book.
One thing I've learned since my first book was published in 1984 is that there are countless ways to write, promote, market, and sell books. Every author has experiences that may be slightly different -- or vastly different -- from another writer.
I read as much as I can from fellow writers as well as publishing houses, agents and others associated with the business and craft of writing. I have numerous books by the likes of agents Donald Maas, Michael Larsen, and Jeff Herman as well as writing tomes by Stephen King, Brenda Ueland, John Gardner, and Sol Stein. And I have Writer's Market, Guide to Literary Agents and similar books that I refer to for advice and guidance.
I subscribe to Writer's Digest, The Writer and Poets & Writers as well to several websites. The point I'm trying to make is that there is an enormous amount of information out there for writers of all genres, shapes and sizes.
Like most writers, I enjoy talking to other writers in person. That can be at book signings, conferences and other events. Frankfort author Chris Helvey and I meet for coffee every few weeks at the Coffeetree, conveniently connected to Poor Richard's bookstore, and discuss writing, books, and all things pertaining to the craft.
I'm not sure if anything new has surfaced in recent years about writing. Most of it has been rephrased to coincide with a writer's own experiences. Sometimes that proverbial light bulb goes off over my head after reading or hearing something "new" that enlightens me about the craft.
Writing is a lifelong learning experience -- in my opinion. But you'll have to find out what other writers think about that from their experiences.
Until the next time...