Laini Taylor: On Writing

This excerpt is taken from Creating Your Life by Laini Taylor

Laini Taylor is a young-adult fantasy author. She is best known for the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series, which began with Daughter of Smoke & Bone.

In a post on her blog titled, Creating Your Life, she shares some sage advice for writers.

“I want to talk about creating your life. There’s a quote I love, from the poet Mary Oliver, that goes:

‘Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?’

I so clearly remember what it was like, being young and always in the grip of some big fat daydream. I wanted to be a writer always, but more than that, I wanted to have an extraordinary life. I’m sure I dreamed it a million different ways, and that plenty of them were ridiculous, but I think the daydreams were training for writing, and I also think they spurred me to pursue my dreams for real.

Daydreaming, however awesome it is, is passive. It happens in your head. Learning to make dreams real is another matter, and I think it should be the work of your life. Everyone’s life, whatever their dream (unless their dream is to be an axe murderer or something.)

It took me a while to finish a book. Too long. And you know, it doesn’t matter how good a writer you are unless you finish what you start! I think this is the hardest part for most people who want to write. I was in my mid-30s before I figured it out. The brain plays tricks. You can be convinced you’re following your dream, or that you’re going to start tomorrow, and years can pass like that. Years.

The thing is, there will be pressure to adjust your expectations, always shrinking them, shrinking, shrinking, until they fit in your pocket like a folded slip of paper, and you know what happens to folded slips of paper in your pocket. They go through the wash and get ruined. Don’t ever put your dream in your pocket. If you have to put it somewhere, get one of those holsters for your belt, like my dad has for his phone, so you can whip it out at any moment.

Hello there, dream.”

Read the rest of the post here: Creating Your Life

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[Top Tip: Learn how to write fantasy. Buy The Fantasy Workbook]

Posted on: 25th August 2012
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