I have an intimate relationship with writer’s block, as likely do most writers. Blessedly, it tends to attach itself to my right brain when there is no formal writing assignment at hand. Only when I am meant to follow my own path, to create as I see fit, does writer’s block erect its roadblocks.
My writer’s block sees to it that the creative process becomes as painful and laborious as possible. “Why should writing be easy?” it whispers in my ear, as I struggle to untangle the knot of ideas that lodge themselves in the hollows that remain uncontaminated by its Sapphic voice.
Photo by Ed Yourdon
And yet, if I can simply bring myself to extract one thought, one idea, and to pursue it with focus, then I can break free of its spell and produce something, anything, to keep the blank page at bay. And with that small success in mind, I offer a few tips for working around writer’s block.
It’s often said that those who can’t do, teach, but I’ve found that the best teachers are those who both teach and do.
In fact, having dabbled in the delivery of workshops and short courses has given me not only huge respect for those who teach full time, it’s also taught me that teaching can be as beneficial to the teacher – as industry professional – as it is to the students.
Teaching your craft to others not only allows you to pass down knowledge and experience you’ve gained in your sector, it also creates an invaluable two-way learning process whereby both teacher and students collaborate in the exploration of new ideas and approaches. Teaching, in fact, is as much about learning as it is about teaching others what they need to know.
Need more good reasons teaching can enhance your career? Here are 6:
I read an article a few months ago about a book that was causing a sensation in Germany. Described as a sort of coming of age story couched in sexual explicitness, it sold half a million copies in Germany, landing at the top of Amazon’s global best seller list.
So when I sotted the bright green and pink pile of books stacked in the erotica section (right next to the fiction, I swear) I recognized Wetlands almost instantly. And though I was with a colleague at the time, I decided to buy it (despite the ensuing teasing). My first erotica book, how exciting!
Whether you write books, articles, poetry or corporate communication pieces, if someone else publishes your work, then you’ll likely have to work with an editor.
Most publications and publishing houses have editors who assign and/or vet content to ensure it meets the organization’s editorial mandate and jives with the needs of its readers.
But for new writers, bloggers or citizen journalists, working with an editor might be a new experience. Here are some tips for ensuring the collaboration goes smoothly.
Canadian post-secondary schools continue to churn out grads seeking careers in the publishing industry. Meanwhile, the industry is shrinking almost daily and the game is changing as more and more publishing takes place in a Web-based framework—at least for periodicals.
It’s an exciting time to be entering an industry so ripe for innovation and new ideas, but it’s also a challenging time as jobs become scarcer than ever and the competition fierce. But publishing has always been a competitive field in Canada, and the fundamentals of getting into the industry still apply—after all, it’s still about the love of reading, writing and sharing information.
Here are some tips that have served me well, along with advice I happily pass on to those who are looking to get into a career in publishing. Continue reading