I'm always asked where do I get my ideas from?
Well apart from everyday living, really looking about me at what is going on and putting that into your own words.
A good place to start is something you are familiar with or good at or know something about. For instance; something as mundane as getting up and eating breakfast. You can tell a a tale of how you wake up, maybe with an alarm clock! Where the cereal is kept, how big the packet is, what type you like.
You see how it can grow into a story without really thinking too hard?
There are lots of 'books' and companys that you can pay to have a personal tutor 'mark' your work and help you along the way. There is nothing wrong with doing that if you want to prepare 'homework' and work on stuff that you aren't really into. Many have found these methods work well.
There is no easy way to get published. If you are the 'one in a million' that is discovered well done!
Look over your work and try to make sure it reads correctly, ie: no spelling mistakes. Reading it aloud to yourself will help.
Start with articals for mags or papers. Even a complaints letter! Keep at it and try not to let all the returns you will get, (I've had millions and still get them) get you down. Crying over your brilliant piece that you slaved over for days, sometimes weeks will not help. I know it's hard but put it behind you and start again.
- A good tale has to have a start, middle and an end. Even articals should be to the point and not rambling around.
Editors are very different in what they are looking for. Look for mags that you like read several to get an idea of what kind of 'story' they publish. It's no good writing to a mag for teenagers about car maintenence unless they happen to be running a 'special' on that subject at that time.
Stories have to grab the reader from the start and hopefully keep them reading to the end without boring them.
Try to get the plot to flow, and not finish suddenly like you have run out of ideas.
Nothing puts a reader off more than a sudden finish with nowhere to go. This is not the same as using a 'cliff hanger' to get you to the next chapter or book.
So in short;
- Write about what you know.
- Give the story/artical a start,middle, end.
- Read,read,read, to get a 'feel' of what the editor is looking for.
- Don't 'ramble'.
- Don't get upset by rejection. We ALL have them.
- 'Hook' reader from the start, and try not to end with readers wondering 'what'?
Good luck and happy writing.