Awhile back I added Esquire’s Chris Jones to my collection of writers and their origin stories. I got the story of Jones’ big break from his blog, which turns out to be kind of a gold mine for people – like me – who like to geek out on other writers talking about their writing.
Are you one of those people, too? Check these posts out:
Losing’s Reward is a brutally honest post about Jones’ Roger Ebert profile missing out on the National Magazine Award nominations, and Fear is about, well, the fear and doubt that infect the writing process.
NO lists 20 things that “should rarely if ever appear anywhere near your copy.”
Bonus link: Jones’ Esquire colleague Scott Raab also posted some writing advice on his site awhile back. This is the meat of it:
Writers love to write — and not because it’s easy. Getting it right isn’t easy at all, and that challenge is a big part of why writers love to write. It’s a high, working on your game, a way of being in the world that feels absolutely honest and true.
Anyone, especially in his or her twenties, saying ‘I have no time to write’ because of a job or anything else is full of crap. Writers write. If you can’t find time to write, don’t worry about becoming a writer. You’re not a writer. You’ll never be a writer. Find something else that lights you up.
Same with reading. Anybody who has no time to read isn’t a writer. All the work necessary to learn how to write boils down to reading and writing. This is not subtle or nuanced advice, obviously. I stress it here because of how often I talk to people who seem to think there’s a shortcut. I know no shortcuts.