Saturday, January 23, 2016

Writing Advice for My Younger Self

Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself. Marcus Tullius Cicero

I guess any advice I’d give to my younger self depends on which point in time we’re talking about. From age 7 to 12, I just wrote my stories and didn’t worry about anything. From 12 to about 16 I wrote more serious stories, about space cadets and starships, and I shared them with my friends and it was all fine. I even submitted some to various magazines and collected rejections slips. Around the age of 16, some of the older ‘cool’ kids got their hands on one of my stories and made fun of me publicly, and THAT was that. No more sharing from me.

But I kept writing of course.

The thing is, I think my life has gone pretty much the way it’s supposed to. I don’t have regrets or want to reverse any of my major decisions, and the writing is woven through my life. I’m not going to serve up the year by year recitation of the life and times of Veronica Scott, no worries. But the point is, I honestly can’t see any advice I could travel back in time to give myself about the writing. I was doing what I was supposed to do, and able to do, at each point.

I always read voraciously, at every age. Still do.

I got married, had children, was widowed, pursued my career to support us all…

I got a degree in business and I worked in Acquisition for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and wow, did I learn a LOT about contracts and business and process improvement and finance, and many other things that work for me now as my own small business, publishing my books.

I always wrote. I always had stories in my head. At the point in my life where I was able to devote serious time to actually learning the fundamentals of the craft, getting published, starting to self publish, getting really involved in social media and blogging…then I did all of that and had some wonderful mentors and friends who helped and advised. That really started in late 2010.

So….here I am, at a loss for advice to make it worth hopping in the time machine and traveling back to any given moment. Now if I could give advice on non-writing stuff, ok then! But that wasn’t the assignment.

You know how advice is. You only want it if it agrees with what you wanted to do anyway. John Steinbeck

My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither, but just enjoy your ice cream while it's on your plate. Thornton Wilder

She generally gave herself very good advice, (though she very seldom followed it).Lewis Carroll

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