Diane and Akwaeke went, writer to writer a while ago. Read their meeting of minds here. Today they share some of their tips, strategies and encouragement for anyone writing.
1. Read the genre you're writing before you start. A lot. Especially, read Ursula K. Le Guin, regardless of what you're trying to write.
2. Writing is the yin to editing's yang - opposite but necessary processes. Don't try to edit while you're writing your first draft: it'll make you crazy and it'll suck the fun out of it.
3. Observation is vital. Work out how people actually speak and act, but remember that nothing has to be absolutely true. If the writing feels truthy to the reader, that is enough.
- Don't worry about how good the first draft is going to be. Assume it will be bad and and learn to be okay with that. As they say, the only job of a first draft is to exist. Revision is where you can fix everything.
- Separate your anxiety about the future of the work from the process of creating it.
- Remove distractions. Face your work.