For those of you who aren’t aware of #1LineWed, it’s a weekly Twitter event, hosted by @RWAkissofdeath, in which writers share their work based on a theme. It’s a wonderful day, filled with candy and rainbows and happiness. Anyone can participate—so if you don’t already, start this Wednesday!
I love 1LineWed because it has reignited my love for writing, and the reason I started writing in the first place. Over the years, I’ve faltered, I’ve felt despair and hopelessness, I’ve wanted to give up. But 1LineWed came along and was all, “Hey! Look how many other people are writing! Let’s celebrate your words, k?”
1LineWed has shown me:
There are TONS of great writers out there.
Some of them are published, many of them aren’t. But isn’t it amazing? This community of people, each doing their own thing, while at the same time being part of something greater; looking at life through their own, unique lens, and sharing it with the rest of the world.
You can always, always, cut words and get the same meaning across…or better.
1LineWed is a rigorous exercise in getting a point across in as few words as possible. Sometimes you need to get really creative. Distill, distill, distill—and BOOM!—you’ve just Hemingway’d your own prose.
Sometimes you just need someone to say, “Hey, nice line!”
Yeah, yeah, yeah, rejection is part of the publishing game. But Jesus H., a little positive feedback never killed anyone. It’s not as if writers are going to get spoiled with it. It might just be enough to keep us from drowning in negativity, both self-imposed and external.
Sometimes you need to be the one to say, “Hey, nice line!”
Step outside of your ego for just one second. Lift another writer’s words through the Twittersphere with a like and a retweet (especially a retweet!), and maybe even a comment showing your appreciation. Celebrating someone else’s work can be more exhilarating than focusing, ad nauseam, on your own.
You have some writing crutches that have got to go.
Man, oh man, do my characters love to shrug and wink. They also like to reach out a hand. They like to have tears in their eyes. And sometimes I overlook entire senses when I’m writing description. What’s a world void of scent? A vacuum, that’s what.
You have some writing strengths that you can develop.
I’ve written some damn good sentences! Hallelujah! Maybe I’m not such a shitty writer after all, no matter what all those voices say. When you revisit your work from a different angle, without the pressure of story arc or publishing goals, you get a chance to appreciate what you’ve done. Maybe 90% of it needs work. Maybe 10% of it is good. Just on Wednesdays, focus on the good stuff.
You can never have enough writer friends (and if you can meet them without having to do dreaded small talk, all the better).
Every week I find writers to follow and some writers follow me, too. And then I’ve added to my rich tapestry of writer friends who are all obsessed with the same things I am, struggle with the same challenges, and get excited over the same nerdy details.
Happy writing and happy sharing!