Writing advice from Ann Schuster

I love buying books about writing. It makes me feel as if I am a real writer and makes me pay attention to the books I read in a different way.

But, many of these books contain the disappointing news that this act of buying books about writing, an act I take great pleasure in, is not really how you become a better writer. You can only be a writer if you write, these writers say. Still, if I hadn’t bought the book, maybe I wouldn’t believe them.

If you, like me, feel that reading what other people think about writing is helpful to your own writing, you might enjoy the series I’ll be posting over the next few days (or weeks, let’s see).

Today’s advice from Ann Schuster, from her book ‘to the islands: a creative writing workbook’ which I purchased last week from a fantastic local second hand bookstore in Cape Town, Blank Books.

Every writer I’ve ever worked with, myself included, has expressed a wish that they could write more regularly, more easily, more creatively, more authentically, with more flow, and enjoy it more. We are talking about that mysterious thing called the creative process. There are many theories of creativity, and many approaches to ‘learning’ creative writing. The approach that underpins this workbook is inspired by practice. It is based on the idea that what writers need most is to write. Writers find their feet by writing. They tune their voices by writing. To write frequently and with abandon allows you to explore the palettes and scenery of your creative universe.

Anne Schuster – to the islands: a creative writing workbook