6 Pieces of Advice For Becoming a Famous Writer

While we live in an age where it seems difficult for anybody to make a living from writing, some of us are still dreamers, inspired by the fact that J.K. Rowling was poor as shit until she wrote the Harry Potter series.

But if there’s any chance of you taking over for Lena Dunham, you’ll have to learn from the pros. The New Yorker just put out a story called, “The Middle of Things: Advice for Young Writers,” which prompted me to conduct an internet search that could aid guide any writing hopeful on the road to success.

Here’s all the best advice for aspiring writers, below.

1. Only Write About Stuff You Care About

“Probably the most oft quoted piece of advice is ‘write what you know.’ I’d revise that to say ‘write what interests you.'” – Adam Haslett, Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of Imagine Me Gone on Quora.

2. Don’t Become an Alcoholic

Writers often take their stories on for themselves.

“You have to feel horrible things,”Cynthia Bond, author of Ruby told The Guardian. “Like what makes a pedophile attracted to a child, the sadistic pleasure that someone gets from hurting someone. I feel everything. God, I really wish I was a good drinker. I get why so many writers are alcoholics! Me, I just ate a lot of chocolate.”

3. Read Rainer Marie Rilke’s “Letters to a Young Poet”

Andrew Solomon said so in the New Yorker article. I can’t personally vouch for this, but I believe him.

4. Ask Yourself if You Would Die If You Couldn’t Write

And if you wouldn’t, according to Mr. Rilke, take yourself out of the game.

5. Give Yourself Deadlines

‘Cause you can’t do anything if you don’t have goals, right? “It’s easy to take 10 years to write a novel when you don’t have deadlines, or to stop writing altogether,” Holly Robinson, author of Chance Harbor said.

6. Get a Room

“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction,” Virginia Woolf once wrote.  I’m not sure about the money aspect of this, but definitely carve out some space for yourself in life. Otherwise you’ll never have a moment to think about all the brilliant stories you’re going to write. Get to it.

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