How to write when you don’t feel like

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Let’s be honest, there will be times you won’t feel like writing. You’ll be tempted to do every other thing except to write. Sometimes, you may not be in the mood for days or even weeks. You just can’t explain why don’t ‘feel like’ writing. Somehow, inspiration seems to have taken a long hike and you’re not sure when it’s going to return. 

Well, if you intend to be a good writer, one who is known to make impact, you need to know how to write whether you are in the mood or not. The best writers are those who are able to master how to write in ll seasons; whether they are in the mood or not. 

We want you to be one of the best writers the world has ever known. Here are some tips that will help you to write even if you are not in the mood. 

Allow Yourself to Write Crap

Yes, you read correctly! Allow yourself to write crap. Sometimes, the reason you don’t feel like writing is because you feel what you will produce will not be good enough. “So why write it,” you wonder. Other times, you don’t write because you over think things; How should I start? Will the story be interesting enough? Will people want to read it?

You need to stop over-analyzing and write. Ignore those voices that keep telling you that what you want to write will not be good enough. Who said so? You never know how good what you have to write is until you finish. And even if it is not as good as you want it, you can always edit and fix it! 

It is possible for you to start writing and the first few paragraphs won’t make sense to you. Instead of getting frustrated, just keep going on. The victory is in the process. Finish, review and learn where you need to review.

Motivate yourself 

If you say you are not in the mood and you know that you definitely need to write then do the needful and motivate yourself. What puts you in a good mood? What gets you excited? Note them and do those things.

You may need to take a walk, listen to music to motivate yourself. The best motivation however is thinking about the number of lives what you want to write will bless. Your message should motivate you. Your purpose should stir you to write.

Even if like this man you have to search for motivation;

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Don’t stop until you find it😌

Eliminate every form of distraction and time yourself

It is bad enough that you do not feel like writing, the last thing you should do is to allow distractions. Your children are running around the house, the TV is on and you’ve been surfing the internet for almost an hour. Why will you feel like writing?

Find someone to stay with your children, leave the house, go for a power walk and go back home to write or look for a park, co-working space where you can have some peace and quiet and write. Distractions are not good for anyone much less a writer.

What are some of the ways you get yourself to write when you are not in the mood. Do share!

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5 tips to help you coin the best title for your book

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How many of you reading this post right now were not drawn to it by the title? You probably clicked the link to this post because the headline triggered your interest. The same situation could be obtainable in a bookshop or library. The first thing that catches your attention in such a place could either be the title of the book or the design of the book cover.

Titles are not to be chosen haphazardly. Titles are like the sun around which the entire writing revolves round and if it is done wrong, your book will suffer for it. We have some tips to help in guiding you towards the choice of a title. They are as follows:

Avoid one-word titles

This is relevant because one word titles would make it difficult to distinguish between your book and other online articles with the same word in them. For example, if your choice for a title is “Thrones” and somebody wants to search for your book on the web, it would be almost impossible for your book to come up on the first page because there are so many articles on the web containing “thrones” in them.

Give your readers a hint.

This simply means that your titles should be crafted in such a way that it gives a hint of what the book is about and creates suspense in the mind of the potential reader at the same time.

Avoid duplicates.

This involves surfing the web to know if your intended title has already been used before. If you do not do this, you might find yourself as the author of a book with the same title as some other renowned author. The implication of finding yourself in that spot is that your work as an author would, most likely, be perceived as lacking originality.

Capture your niche.

This simply means that your title should encapsulate the genre in which your book belongs. Do not title a fiction book like it is a science fiction book or a memoir. Make sure the title gives your potential readers a clue as to what they should expect from the book.

Make it simple and easy to remember.

You definitely do not want to give your book a title that people would struggle to remember. Make sure that your title is simple and can roll off the tongue easily.

We really do hope these tips helped you!

This is how to infuse humour into your articles

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Would you not love to read a book that makes you laugh almost all of the time and still dishes out wisdom? Who wouldn’t want that?

A book with a lot of humour in it makes an interesting read. We all love to laugh. It is important as a writer to understand that mixing humour with your writing would do you a lot of good. WHY? Simply because your readers would relate better with your work.

You do not necessarily have to be a comedian to write funny stuff. All you have to do is to creatively use your words  to tell stories. Here is how to go about it.

Paint pictures with your writing that relate to the reader’s sense of smell, taste, sight, sound, texture. For example, you could describe how a particular character of yours unintentionally unveils his infidelity to his wife during one of his sleep-talking bouts and the expression of shock on his face when his wife wakes him up at midnight with a queer smile on her face and a wooden pestle in her hand.

Ensure you have moving characters and not static characters. This speaks volumes and can spice up your sense of humour in writing. It is easier to make your readers laugh when your character is moving. Consider the scenario where a moving character in his or her angry bout begins to pour so much sugar into the food he or she prepares mindlessly thinking it was salt instead and the reaction of his or her guest at the end of the day.

Use similes to strike up funny images in your writings. Similes are figures of speech that have ‘as’ or ‘like’ in them. For example, in describing one character from the perspective of another character, you could say, “He is as scary as a mouse.” The ironic nature of this simile could elicit smiles in your readers as well.

We do hope these tips helped you!

 

 

 

 

 

This is how to write clearly

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Have you ever read books that mentally wore you out? You know, those kinds of books that leave you confused? If you have, then it would not be too difficult to appreciate a good book that takes you, seamlessly, from one part of the story to the other.

What this means is that clear writing is pivotal in making your piece understood by your readers or audience. You definitely do not want someone reading your article or write up and coming out of the reading experience with a headache. Sigh.

We would be giving you tips on how to make your writing better and clearer.

Have a plan 

It is important that you have a plan before writing. A plan includes some sort of guideline to help you in your writing. This is important because a plan helps you to fix in and delete what needs to be in your writing as well as what needs to be deleted from your writing. Whenever you eventually finish writing, make sure you arrange it in such a way that there is a logical flow of thought. Make sure you include everything that needs to be covered within the scope of your writing.

Read through over and over again 

You need to read through your work to make sure there is a flow of thought in your writing as a whole. You need to be detailed enough to include linking words if the need arises. Linking words or transitional words help to link words, phrases, clauses and paragraphs together in a coherent way. Examples of transitional words are; in addition, equally, identically, however, although, then again, after all and so on.

Have someone else read your work

This is crucial because there are things that might not catch your attention even after reading through a couple of times. It might take someone else to point out that flaw or that idea that you unintentionally left out. Be open to ideas and corrections from other people. This would help a great deal in your writing.

We do hope these tips are helpful.

 

Become an extraordinary writer with these tips

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Who wouldn’t want to read today’s post? The title alone is inviting but beyond that we have killer tips on today’s Writing Series and you know we don’t just talk at the Hub.

If you want to move from ordinary to extraordinary, these tips will help.

Compare yourself with yourself ONLY.

Can we just say this; comparing yourself to other writers is a recipe for disaster. Each writer is on a different journey and you need to STAY ON YOUR LANE.

It is easy to see comparison from the angle of ‘I have failed’ but sometimes comparing yourself with other writers and feeling like a champion can be deadly.

If you write 1,000 words in a day while a fellow writer manages to fit just 500 into their busy schedule, it’s easy to get cocky and relaxed, which makes you slip into bad habits when in actual fact you should be writing 2,000 words because you stay at home all day.

Every writer has different strengths and weaknesses; a different day job, a different state of mind. You can only compare you to you. Evaluate and track your progress. Learn from others but never compare. You are well on your way to becoming not just an extraordinary writer but a balanced one too.

Train your eyes to see extra in the mundane things.

Learn how to look out for the extraordinary in the ordinary activities of everyday life as well as everyday concepts. Think about this for a minute. Most books you read are not exactly about new concepts or issues that you are totally unfamiliar with. On the contrary, they are about every day issues like walking by the roadside, Lagos hustle, conversations in Danfo buses and so on. However, you can master the art of making them sound like something from space!

Be willing to step out of the box.

All it takes sometimes is that willingness to write even if it makes no sense initially. You see, most of the writers we celebrate in our world today were rebels at some point. They simply refused to dive into the pool of conformity. They were unusually bold about their unconventional ideas and their unconventional manner of expression. Decide to step outside of your comfort zone and fly free or in this case, write free.

Cheers to your extraordinariness in 2018! Yep, we just formed that word.

Self-publishing tips you need to read

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We’d keep saying this, this is the year of making great progress with our writing career and we are here to make that easy for you.

For writers who are considering self publishing in 2018, you will find these tips useful.

Publishing your book can be a daunting task and self publishing even worse. There’s so much to look out for and here are a few you should be mindful of.

Never forget to include your contact information

This is extremely important because it would be totally ridiculous to go through the stress of publishing a book without the author’s contact information. People should be able to find you via your book.

Pay an editor if you have to

Seriously, in as much as you would love to handle everything about your book yourself, it is, nice scratch that, wisdom to pay an editor to avoid those typos that can turn the most patient reader off.

Pay attention to your cover design

If you have no knowledge of books or cover designs, then pay someone to do it for you. Cover designs have a whole lot to do with how your work will be received in the market. Let your design be ah-mazing!

We do hope these tips help you!

 

Go beyond saying you want to write in 2018

Hello dear writer! I know we’re eight days into the new year but since this is our official resumption day, let me start by wishing you a very happy new year. 

We’re grateful at The Sparkle Writers Hub to have you as our follower and supporter. I’m glad that many of you took the motivation we shared on social media and ran with it.

2017 was a year filled with testimonies from writers across the country. We had people who published books, there were some who finally completed their manuscripts after being stuck for many months, other launched their blog, some took their writing more seriously and many more began to make money from the craft.

The biggest testimony for me came from those who never believed they could master the art of writing. Today, because of their commitment to getting better, they are writing like they were born with the skill. 

I say this many times to the writers I coach and those that come for our writing classes, “Writing is not as difficult as you think.” Yes, I understand that you find it very difficult to put your thoughts into words but with great discipline, this will become easier. We’ve had too many testimonies for me to be certain of this. That’s why there is one thing that I need you to do for me this year – go beyond saying you want to write

Talk is cheap and when it comes to achieving goals, talk holds no water. 

I remember this quiet but incredibly intelligent young lady I coached last year. She reached out to me on social media and told me how she had struggled to write a book for eight months. “Eight months? Surely it can’t be that deep!” I had to tell her this. During her first coaching session with me, I was determined to discover what the problem was. After talking with her for several minutes I found it. She talked so much about this book that it became a hindrance when she wanted to settle down to write. In fact, there were many months where she didn’t settle down to write at all. She kept writing in her head. Do you know what I told her? I asked her to take her laptop, open a blank document and just write using a guide and an outline that I shared with her. Four weeks later, that book was finished! 

It’s good to set goals and have big dreams but can you go beyond that stage and actually act on your dreams?

Yes, you don’t write so well. What can you do to change that this year? What steps can you take to ensure that your writing muscles are exercised weekly or even daily? If you lack motivation or inspiration, what can you do to get it?

Push away the excuses and take a step that you didn’t take last year to become better at your craft. You will be surprised at the results you will get. This is why I am very excited about the launch of our support group for writers, Sparkle Writers Pro. If what you need is 24-hour motivation, tips, resources and materials to help you write better, this support group is for you. We are going to work round the clock to make sure we turn you into the best writer you can be. Watch out for more details about Sparkle Writers Pro later today. 

Please remember that your dreams are valid and achievable only if you act! Be committed and consistent with your skill and most importantly, develop it. 

Happy new year once again! 

Dear writer, you are a gift to your world

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It’s the season of giving and what better thing to talk about than how precious writers are to the world?

Writers are gifts. Yes, you are a gift to the world. Take it or leave it. It is high time you began to unveil more of your words to the world and take off the wrapping sheet little by little. You know, when gifts are presented to people, they are wrapped in beautiful sheets majorly for the purpose of unveiling the content by the would-be recipient of the gift. If the wrapping sheet is not taken off, nobody gets to see what is in it. Nobody gets to ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ over the beauty of the gift.

That is our point exactly. You world is not going to know it has been given a gift if there is no unveiling or unwrapping. This is the season and this is the time for you to show your world what it has been missing. Let your words flow out of you without trying to hold them back. Give your words the chance to put a smile on someone’s face. Give your words the chance to heal; the chance to give someone a ray of hope in this depressing world. The sky is wide enough for you to sparkle and be the gift that you are to your world.

Whatever it takes dear writer, unveil your gift. Of what use would a gift be if it just remains in one corner with no unwrapping or unveiling? You are right! It would not be of use to anyone. It would just be there sitting pretty and not making ANY difference. You do not have to be that way. Write and make a difference to your world. That is how it starts.

Never forget that you are a gift. Be that gift and let your star sparkle like never before.

Writing is a craft; treat it as such

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Do you know that there has always been this argument about the difference between art and craft? Well, it has often been said that writing cannot fall into the category of craft because it does not produce something tangible like pottery, sculpting and wood-carving would produce.

It has also been mentioned that art comes as a result of a person’s innate talent while skill in craft can be acquired with experience. How wrong! 

You see, writing is art and craft all at the same time. It is true that writing, irrespective of whatever genre, first begins with your innate talent. However, it does not end there.  You’ve got to put in the work. Someone who carves wood for instance becomes skilled with experience. No wood carver becomes a legend overnight, irrespective of how talented he or she maybe. It takes time, lots of work, practice and experience to become a better crafts-person. The same happens with writing. Don’t see yourself as someone who just puts down whatever he feels like. You are a skilled person, setting hearts free, bringing joy and hope with your words.

It is high time you began seeing your writing as a craft. When you do this, it takes on a new shape. It becomes something tangible. You begin to see yourself as a crafts-person using his or her tools, which in this case are not concrete, to carve out images that people can relate with.

How do you get to that point where your writing becomes so tangible and real that your audience can almost touch your message? The answer is to keep writing to gain mastery of your craft.

One thing you should always remember is this: it is a good thing to be a talented writer. However, without practice and determination, you will never be a skilled crafts-person. Talent is just never enough.

The bright side of writer’s block

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As much as we do not believe in writer’s block, we know there are some writers who still struggle with it. Today we have discovered something fun…the bright side of writer’s block! 

Who ever thought that writer’s block could have a bright side? 

Firstly, if you want to get the best out of a writer’s block experience (since you insist you have it) you have to change the way you see it. You have to stop seeing the block as an enemy. If you continue to see writer’s block as the enemy, you would end up frustrated and anxious. This will further hinder the inspiration from coming at the time it should come.

Secondly, writer’s block is life’s way of saying, “Hey, writer, it is time for you to take a break and have fun.” It draws your attention to some areas of life that you probably have been missing out on. It could be a shopping experience, a movie, another genre of novel that you probably never considered reading, a sermon, a scrabble game, a walk around the neighborhood, a music album, playing the guitar, anything to take your mind off the task for some time. The list is endless really. Have you ever wondered why inspiration drops at times when you are not even deliberate about it? So, relax and be calm. Handle writer’s block like a pro.

Finally, writer’s block will help you develop patience as a writer. It will teach you how to go easy on yourself and bring you face to face with your humanity. When you write in that “lack of inspiration” state and feel like what you have written is not worth writing or reading, you have to understand that with just a little patience, you can make something beautiful out of a crappy piece of writing. Do not give up on your writing because of writer’s block. Look on the bright side and become better at your writing craft.

See that writers block isn’t so bad after all?