Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Best Advice


I'm going to make my blog short today but I have a question for everyone.

"What is the best advice anyone ever gave you? Authors what is the best writing advice anyone ever gave to you? Do you follow advice when it's given ?

Do you read advice columns? Personally I miss Erma Bombeck she had a sense of humor about almost any situation.

What bad advice were you given?

The best writing advice was from my late writing mentor Monette Cummings she said
"Plant butt to chair and don't get up until you've written something and even if you toss it out the next day."

My grandmother used to say "You can waste the day thinking about what you want to do today or you can just do it." This was long before the Nike Commericals or Just Say No day and age.
Another piece of advice came from my daughter years ago she said...when I complained one day...

"The way I look at it mom you're going to die anyway so you might as well write the book."
Okay it's your turn except I will say I can't pick from the bad advice I've gotten over the years from well meaning people. I will comment that not every advice is tailor made to fit but I do give advice with the best of intentions. LOL



  1. I take advice with a grain of salt. Usually it is well meant, but what is right for them is not necessarily right for me. Plus sometimes I just want to vent -- NOT solutions. That is an ongoing one for me. Don't try and fix it, just listen.

    But that said, I believe HONESTY is always the best choice. Period.

    Also, facing CHALLENGES instead of obstacles or problems helps MY mindset. Sets me for thinking to overcome them not get stuck by them.

    I am sure there are others but that comes to mind right now


  2. I believe that sometimes the best advice is no advice. I also feel that really listening is a dying art and I defintely gulity of tuning people out but like you Terri I like to think of obstacles as challenges. This is the year I decided to be more positive and for the most part I have accomplished that however that doesn't mean that I don't have my challenges. LOL

  3. I've gotten so much good advice it's hard to narrow it down, so I'll tell you the first advice that really made an impact. I met my agent at a conference standing in line. Didn't know she was an agent, we just started talking. She asked about my MS and asked to see it when I got back home. We discussed submitting, and I told her I had been submitting with just had a notion of an idea, or only a partial. She told me that as an unpublished writer, I had to have my work not only finished, but polished, because when that editor or agent asked for it, they didn't want to wait ten months to get it. Which is exactly how long she had to wait to get mine, because guess what? It wasn't finished or polished. I should have known this, but I was too new.

    After I'd cleaned the MS up, I submitted to her, only to find out she was no longer accepting submissions. I almost lost out right there. I was lucky. I reminded her of where we'd met and our conversation and she made an exception. Almost immediately, she offered to represent me, but I learned a valuable lesson. The work needs to be ready.

    Now it's different for published writers and even situations where an editor has seen samples of an unpubbed writer's work, knows you can write, but needs something different. In that case, I think it's fine to throw out an idea. Lots of writers sell that way, but for newbies, like I was, I almost ruined my shot. If this kind lady who turned out to be my agent hadn't told me that I would likely have continued to send in shoddy work and not gotten published.


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