Writing an amazing screenplay about fictional events can be challenging. By basing your screenplay on a true story, you can use the basic structure of true events as a framework to hold the rest of your narrative. It can also be a lucrative way to convert existing non-fiction writing into potentially valuable Hollywood property. Watching movies based on true stories is a good way to hone your screenwriting skills.Watch these movies to become a better screenwriter. Click To Tweet
Writing inspiration is all around us, everywhere we look. That guy at the next table at the coffee shop who’s alone and reading a book instead of playing with his phone. That little girl at the park sitting on the grass staring at a tree. That sparrow who is pecking at the crumbs of your cheesecake.
Books. Blog posts. TV shows. And, yes, movies.
Even if these materials aren’t specifically about writing, we can still glean inspiration from them. Today, I’m sharing watching material for movie buffs – or even the casual movie watcher. I’ve seen some of these movies, while the others are on my watch list. [Read more…]
If you thought that a freelance writing career meant you were destined to write about totally uninteresting topics, think again. Freelance writers can write about virtually anything—and get paid for it!
It’s important to keep in mind that freelance gigs are not always a one-time-only gig! You might get hired for a full-time or part-time freelance writing job, or even a seasonal gig, depending on the topic you’re covering. Many freelance writing jobs are remote-friendly, meaning you can work from anywhere, but some do have a location requirement and might want you to report to an office. [Read more…]
While Wednesday is traditionally a low day for workers – who wants to be stuck in the middle? – it doesn’t really have much of an effect on many freelancers, does it? For some, however, weekends are sacred. It is time for family. It is “me time”.
For the latter group, then, Hump Day certainly exists. Since I try to keep the weekends free for things I don’t get to do during the week, I usually experience the blues on Wednesday (even though I end up doing some work on the weekends).
Words don’t come easily. My fingers are so uncoordinated I can’t type without making a mistake every 30 seconds. My mind wanders as if it were a leaf being blown by the wind. [Read more…]
[UPDATED: May 2017]
In keeping with the Halloween spirit, let’s have a bit of scary fun.
Let’s take a look at some horror writing prompts, which will bring out your dark side.
Whether you are a horror writer, or you just want to flex your creative juices, these prompts ought to send chills down your spine – which may or may not be a good thing. [Read more…]
We’ve all read romance novels at some point in our lives. Now, as writers, perhaps some of you want to enter the romance novel scene. Whether as a ghostwriter, using your own name, or using a pen name, there will be times when you face a roadblock in your writing.
There are solutions for that. You can wait till your muse comes to visit. You can force your way through the block. Or you can coax those juices with some writing prompts.
Here are some creative writing prompts for romance novels.
1. What is your favorite romantic comedy movie and why? What would change about the movie if you were inserted into one of the main or supporting roles? Talk about these changes and go into extreme details.
2. They were at the altar, about to say their vows. Suddenly, she imagined them as a couple facing issues of divorce. What happens next?
3. You’ve been in love with a high school friend for as long as you can remember but the feeling was never reciprocated – until your paths cross again decades later. Create a scene where chemistry develops between the two of you.
4. Write a romance that is developing when the main character is dealing with intense suicidal thoughts. In some ways, the romance helps her and doesn’t help her. What happens next?
5. Two strangers meeting at an addiction recovery group meeting and how they connect because of one party sharing his/her story. Write about that person’s story.
6. Write a story about two best friends who are fed up trying to find love on their own. They consider trying to start a relationship with each other since they both find each other attractive and know they are great people. However, there is no romance or chemistry between them.
7. Who is your favorite television or movie couple of all time? What is it that made them such a fantastic couple? What can you learn from them in your own life and relationships?
8. Write a romance which starts with the line “I was struck by the horrible stink that seemingly came out of her every pore”.
9. Write a scene starting with the words “He was the kind of person, despite what he thought, who never really knew what love was.”
10. “It all began when her car hit me at full speed while I was crossing the street…”
11. Write about two people meeting at an old abandoned house, getting stuck there overnight, and how they fell in love.
12. Write about two seemingly ordinary people get married only to find out later that one is a murderer.
13. Start a scene with “Dining alone, I ordered the most expensive bottle of wine they had on the menu. Little did I know that would change my life.”
14. I woke up in a surreal world without any idea where I was, and then this shadowy figure came out of nowhere…
15. Even though Jake the last of the pancakes, Leonard couldn’t find it in himself to get worked up about it.
16. He loved here. But he feared her more.
17. He did something wrong in the past, period. Although she wasn’t the victim, it was pretty bad. How can she be sure he’s changed? (Via)
18. They met on a trip almost a decade ago, and sparks flew. They live worlds apart and haven’t seen each other since then, only keeping in touch now and then on social media. Now, they’re planning on meeting up again.
19. You’re at the aquarium when your boyfriend, a diver, jumps into one of the large tanks holding a plastic sign that reads: “Will you marry me?” Just then the woman next to you shrieks and bursts into tears. (Via)
20. She walked up and down the beach every day at 6 A.M., a red shawl always wrapped around her. What’s her story?
Don’t miss: Ways to Get in the Writing Zone and Horror Writing Prompts
“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” ― C.S. Lewis
I may be biased since C.S. Lewis is one of my favorite authors, but when it comes to children’s books, no truer words have been spoken. I believe that if there is one thing children’s books authors should always remember, it is this quote.
While the children’s book market is shifting, with sales numbers going up and down, the market is still strong. Factors such as reading an eBook instead of a paperback, parents choosing a personalised children’s book instead of a mass-published one, and preferring hardcovers bought in brick-and-mortar bookstores all come together to continue boosting the children’s book industry. [Read more…]
The “how do I motivate myself” question has probably been asked – and answered – a trillion times.
Why do we still hear it? Why do we still ask it?
It’s because there are always going to be periods in which we need all the help we can get to climb out of that well of demotivation.
I’m an expert – at experiencing low periods, that is. As for motivating myself…that’s a whole different story. I’ve learned quite a few things, though, so I’m going to share them with you today.
They’ve worked for me (at different times), and I hope they work for you, too.
How to motivate yourself
Use the carrot on a stick principle.
You all know the story about the donkey and the carrot dangling in front of him. Do the same with yourself when you’re feeling demotivated.
What can you use as a carrot?
Anything you know you’ll look forward to:
- getting paid
- soaking in the tub after you finish X articles
- taking a day off once you finish a project.
Set smaller goals.
If you’ve got a huge project, you might be demotivated because there is so much to do that you feel overwhelmed. If this is the case, break things down.
Instead of always thinking of finishing the entire project (and the deadline), make smaller goals for each day. This way, you can focus on each task better, get things done faster, and feel a sense of achievement every day.
Take advantage of (de)motivational posters.
Motivational posters and funny (de)motivational ones can do you a lot of good. If you prefer serious, then get posters with quotes that will encourage you.
If a dose of humor does it for you, then look for posters like these.
Get a bunch of them, so you can hang up different types on your wall whenever you feel like it. Alternatively, use them as desktop wallpapers.
“Waste” time reading things like…
I wrote “waste” because it isn’t really wasting time when you read articles like “Top 10 Famous Motivational Speeches“.
Other kinds of articles I recommend are those that “restore faith in humanity”. It’s an overused phrase, but it does work to uplift one’s spirits.
What do you do to motivate yourself?
So those are the things I do when I am demotivated. Most of the time they work. Sometimes I need to simply get out of the house. (Read: Why It’s Good to Occasionally Work Outside)
What about you? What would you recommend?
Everyone experiences self-doubt now and then. It’s part of being human, and writers are not exempt from this. In fact, I would go as far as to say that writers probably experience self-doubt more than other people. This is because we create things by transforming abstract ideas into concrete, readable words; and this makes us prone to criticism – whether constructive or not.
Self-doubt may kick in in different situations:
- you have a new client;
- your existing client has a different type of material he wants written;
- you’re working on a topic you haven’t worked on before;
- or you simply just feel that you may not be good enough.
Remember: self-doubt is normal BUT it doesn’t mean you have to let it take control and paralyze you.
When self-doubt kicks in, I’ve learned that there are certain things one can do and/or think in order to get back on track, and that’s what I want to share with you today.
Kicking self-doubt to outer space
Remember when you were a newbie writer, and look at where you are now.
Go back to the time when you were first sending out queries and application letters. You probably had your fair share of rejection letters, but you got a break at some point. How much work have you done since then? How many clients have told you they are happy with your work?
Look for those self-boosting moments in your writing career, dwell on them, and watch self-doubt fly away.
Write something for fun.
If self-doubt still hangs around even though you’ve thought back on your successes as a writer, why not stop focusing on your work for a while? Ask yourself, what do you like writing about – just for the fun of it?
Maybe you like writing short fairy tales. Or maybe you like writing poems.
Whatever makes you feel good, write it!
Don’t think about your clients. Don’t think about what your peers would say. Just write, and have fun. At the end of it all, you’ll feel so much better that self-doubt will have no choice but to go away.
Find someone who needs a mentor.
If you have been writing for some years (or even just months), and you experience self-doubt, then one way to deal with it is to find someone else who could use your help. Participate in forums for writers, Google Plus or Facebook Groups for writers, and similar venues. For sure, there will be at least one person who needs a mentor.
Offer your services, and share what you have learned. That writer will probably express his gratitude in a way that self-doubt gets a good kick up its bum.
Accept failure as part of life.
Acceptance is the first part of any recovery. If you doubt yourself because of a recent failure, accept that it is simply part of life. Lows will occur. You will let others down. You will fail.
What matters, though, is that you accept that these things happen. When you do, you will get up more easily – and faster – and ignore self-doubt more efficiently.
Have you been experiencing self-doubt lately? How did you deal (are dealing) with it? Let’s help each other out by sharing your experiences and advice in the comments!
Editor’s note: This post was written by Sam Eddy, the founder of Fulfilling Aspirations. He wants you to know that changing your habits can help you accomplish big things. If you’re interested in knowing more, click here.
Ever feel like you’re stuck at being just a competent freelance writer?
Yes, you attract the type of clients you want and charge them what you’re worth. Yes, you stay in touch with former clients, sending them a short email to say hi. Yes, you no longer worry about sliding down the slippery slope of an ever-expanding project, because you have a clause in your contract that takes care of that. [Read more…]