Saturday, April 19, 2014

To Be A Better Writer - The Writers' Panels At FanX SLC 2014

I am not really a comic book or super hero nerd!  But when I heard that ComicCon FanX was coming this month to SLC, I jumped at the chance to volunteer.  Why?  Because I love getting a flavor of the mood and atmosphere of fun events that are going on in the community!  I think actually being a part of the event is more fun than going to the event.  And while I didn't get to really explore even a quarter of what was going on because it was so huge, I was really happy with what I did in my own little space, in Panel Rooms 150-A, B, C, and D. 
  These were rooms where panels of experts, writers, directors, artists and stars got together to give advice on topics.  I went to a screenwriting panel and an author/artist panel.  They were informative while managing to be entertaining and funny. I love those kinds of lectures!  So after seating everyone and everything had settled, I listened into some.
  Unfortunately, I wasn't familiar with any of the writers that spoke, but one of them was a really successful young adult author, who raises 7 children as a single mom off of the royalties she gets from her books.  She writes Jane Austen style books?  Anyone familiar with her?  I didn't catch her name. I heard some things I know could be put to good use by anyone wanting to become a better blogger and even writer.  It's all about writing daily, gathering ideas, and turning ideas into chapters and chapters into a book!  Here are a couple of things I learned:
Ask The Questions - If you want to be a writer and have material, always be observant and ask "what if"  questions.  If you see someone walking down the road in a trench coat, in the middle of the night, ask yourself questions about why that would be and turn it into an idea, then write it down.  That is looking at something with different eyes, but that different way of looking at something is what sets a successful author apart from the rest of the population!  
  Have Someone To Bounce Off - Do you have someone who you can throw ideas back and forth with?  Maybe it's your husband, sister, mom or friend.  These sources are great for tossing around potential material!  Take their ideas as well and expand upon them.  It is an invaluable resource to have someone you trust to be a sounding board.  When you do have an idea you'd like to expand on, write it down in a notebook so you won't forget it and can work on it in detail later on!  Never throw anything away because you never know when that idea will come in handy down the road!
 Do It Every Day! -  If you want to be a writer, treat it like a job.  Do something with it every single day!  Exercise your writing skills, your imagination and your content skills daily.  The more you treat it like a job, the more those ideas will flow.  Most of the writers at the panel say that writers block is nothing more than being lazy and blaming it on the lack of ideas.  Just do something every single day!  It's just like exercising.  If you only exercise once per month, it will probably always be difficult and distasteful every time.  But as you develop the habit, it becomes easier and more enjoyable!  There are so many ideas waiting to be written and even if they have already been written, you can write it with your own pair of colored glasses and it will speak to a completely different audience!
And don't worry about whether your audience likes it or not.  Even if the audience  complains or leaves hate comments, at least you know they read it and that is a definite win!  Just keep writing because that is what America is all about.  And until they take that right away from us, keep those ideas flowing!
These fine folks below totally agree with me 100%.  You couldn't find a nicer group of people anywhere than at FanX SLC 2014!

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