Daily Archives: April 2, 2011

Alyssa’s Notes on Christina Katz’ Presentation on Empowering Writers

Christina Katz gave a presentation this month about empowering writers and putting yourself into your work.

She started by going around the audience and having every person introduce themselves, the genre they write and naming whatever frustrations they’re having writing.

Here are some of the topics she covered:

o   If you wish you were writing, but are not there are three steps you should take. 1.) Write Short Stuff 2.) Set short, reachable goals and 3.) Send your work out, but don’t stalk your inbox. Move on.

o   One of the things you can do to help motivate yourself is to join or create a “Pod-Pressure” group. Katz compares this kind of a group to popcorn: alone we may just rattle around, but together, ideas will build, the heat will increase, and all of the kernels will pop into this a collection of tasty, buttery greatness.

o   Find a focused group that will support your ideas, and work together.

o   Your job is to get started, because even if Oprah is going to love your book, she’ll never love it unless you start somewhere.

o   When you begin to write, you’re carving a little space inside of yourself for your creativity. If the people around you are not giving you the support you need, it is in your best interest to have a talk with them and give yourself the environment you need for this creativity to grow.

o   Even if you’ve already published and have produced results, you need to keep pushing yourself to produce more. After being published your writing is not automatically always going to be what people want to publish. You need to keep working and keep making yourself better.

o   There is a satisfaction in the finish. Get it done, you’ll thank yourself.

o   Put your best foot forward, never give in and submit work that is half the potential it should be. You will get rewarded for your own good work, not for the things you slap together without thought.

o   Your writing career is not a blip. You are putting yourself and your own creativity into this, so be proud of yourself.

o   Age hardly matters; never think you are too young or too old. People who publish early still have the same problems as people who publish later; the only problem is that younger writers have to work harder to last longer.

o   Don’t blame the editor. They have to read all the submissions and chose what they want to buy. If it’s not for them, that’s okay. Move on.

o    “Scratch your own creative itches,” keep writing and you will improve yourself as well as your writing.

o   Things you need to do for yourself: 1.) Know that you are a writer, 2.) Have the ability to say “This is what I need” and 3.) Create more time for your writing. If you are a morning person, get up an hour earlier than you usually do, and write. Claim the unclaimed time. You only need to do it a few times to begin to feel satisfied.

o   You have to be proactive and involved with your writing career, not be sitting back and waiting for things to happen.

o   Make your resources easy to access. If there’s a website you like, book mark it. A book you like, buy it and keep it in a special place.

o   Take working at home seriously.

o   Get started creating work. Let what comes out define you.

o   When writing try to figure out:

o   Who is your Ideal reader? Dedicate your work to a group.

o   Who wants to buy your work? Make connections to your group.

o   How are you going to capture the attention of the masses?

o   How are you going to satisfy yourself?

o   Don’t be in a hurry to get to each step, make it a part of your routine.

o   Practice and playfulness helps.

o   When you send in your work, remember that everything deserves to be written well. Listen to advice people give you.

o   Stop psyching yourself out.

o   Delight your editor. As a writer you offer a service, make your customers happy.

o   Be you.