Tips for writers

1. Life isn't fair, but it can make for good material.

2. When in doubt, write another line.

3. Life is too short to waste time hating your writing.

4. Research your work. Just because you’re writing fiction, doesn’t mean you don’t have to get facts right.

5. Test your manuscript or writing on experienced writers.

6. Pick your battles. You don't have to win every argument with your editor or publisher.

7. Every sentence doesn’t have to be perfect from the start. That can come later.

8. Cry with another writer. It's more useful than crying alone.

9. It's OK to get angry with your editor. They can take it.

10. Save story ideas. Start your notebook now.

11. When it comes to proofreading, resistance is futile.

12. Make peace with your editor so they won't screw up your work.

13. It's OK to let your children, parents or spouse read your manuscript, just don’t take their glowing review as gospel - they are not professional editors.

14. Don't waste your time being envious of successful writers. You have no idea how many drafts they did.

15. If a change has to be made behind your editors’ back, you shouldn't be making it.

16. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. Don’t worry about having to rework whole sections if necessary.

17. Take a deep breath. And just keep writing.

18. Get rid of anything that isn't advancing the story, beautifully written or clever.

19. Giving your characters obstacles to overcome, really does make your story more interesting.

20. It's never too early to start marketing your work. Ultimately selling it is up to you and no one else.

21. When it comes to defending what you love in your work, don't take no for an answer.

22. When it comes to marketing your book, don't miss an opportunity.

23. Tell your friends. Use Facebook and other social media to market your book.

24. Burn the late-night candles, use your favourite writing tools, wear an inspiring shirt.

25. Over-write, then cut.

26. Be eccentric now and then. You can always delete later.

27. One of the most important writing traits is persistence.

28. No one is in charge of completing your manuscript but you.

29. Frame every sentence with these words 'Is this taking my story somewhere important?’

30. Always find time.

31. Listen to everything everyone says about your work, then ignore 80% of it.

32. What other people think of your work is none of your business, unless it’s the other 20%, your editor or publisher.

33. Redrafting heals almost everything. Just keep writing.

34. However good or bad a paragraph is, in time it will become clear whether you should delete it or keep it.

35. Don't take your writing too seriously. Few others do.

36. Believe in your own work.