Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. Henry Ford

Ask Nathalie M.L. Römer a question

    • allauthor 2 monthsAllauthor
    • Writing can be an emotionally draining and stressful pursuit. Any tips for aspiring writers?
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      • christineucowin 2 monthsAuthor
      • Hi Nathalia,
        I really enjoyed your article on writer’s block. This is not a problem for me. I’m a prolific writer. I do agree with you, we need to recharge our batteries. I find if I write and break, I can come back and write more. You just need to let your brain rest. It to is an entity, as are all parts of your body and each part has its own way of coping. I guess I know what is important to each parts, of my body. Great article. Thank you.
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      • nathaliemlromer 2 months AuthorAuthor
      • You've probably heard of this thing everyone calls "writer's block" which is possibly what happens when writing has become emotionally draining. Now, I'm telling you there's no such thing. Instead, become used to the "rechargeable creative battery" which is what I refer to as the "fuel" for writing. I never get this so-called "writer's block" because of this differing mindset about writing.

        When you do exercises, you can do it only for so long before you get tired. When you play a game, you can do it for so long before getting tired. When you use your brain for study, for a job, for anything else, you can do it only for so long before you feel tired and drained. It means, at this moment, your "battery" in your mind is drained. Stress in a job can cause the battery to drain faster. The more stress the faster it happens. Like with a rechargeable battery used for a cell phone or other equipment if you only allow yourself to "recharge" a little while it shortens the time available to work adequately. This is the reason you're advised to only sit at a computer for 20-30 minutes then to go do something else.

        It's the same with writing. Spreading out the workload into smaller chunks with many small breaks and regular longer breaks helps with the writing pursuits. If you read a previous answer from me I mentioned I've written at least 1.6 million words to date - over 4.5 years up to end of May 2019 - and I've only managed this because of how I give myself time to recharge my creative battery constantly. I have a schedule where I write at least 1,000 words every day (I write every day just like Stephen King), but I don't stress if no words want to come out of the creative soup called my brain. I have even days where I went all in and wrote in the excess of 15,000 (not recommended if you're not used to working in a calm, silent environment with no one to disturb you - recently discovered I have a similar quirk of waiting for my partner to leave before I get to work which is what Nora Roberts does as well). Never try to be another author. Learn from what works for them then adapt their way of doing things to your own way of doing things. Top tip: Look at what you're already good at and use that as a foundation to create a good writing practice for yourself - and then stick with it!!!

        The best two tips anyone gave me are these two:

        1. Only write for yourself and not to live up to any person's expectations. This helps form your writing into your unique voice that doesn't feel forced. Oh, and I uphold this advice fully and will even say in marketing campaigns I write wordy stories. The first book written and now re-written has over 238,000 words and it's part of a nine-part series. Oftentimes it's said not to write a series as your first story, but if you listen to such suggestions and stick to writing a 50,000 book when you FEEL you want to write a longer book or a longer book in a long series, it's proof you're letting trying to live up to another person's expectations - i.e. that you should only write a certain type of book as a new author. Just write and let your muse dictate what ends up on paper.

        2. The more you write the better you get at it. This advice comes from Orna Ross and was the catalyst for me to start rewriting my first eight books. Proof of how true this is coming from a comparison between what I wrote in 2015 and what I wrote more recently as I'm completing the first draft of Book 4 of my series. In both cases wordy. I've decided I like writing wordy books (deal with it! - see point 1 above) and my current wordy book is 3:1 ration show:tell and I'm doing a lot more worldbuilding through what characters talk about to each other (extra tip: it helps to just read out the words without the "he said/she said" tag to get a feel of how well it sounds). Remember also that the first draft is there to get the words out of your brain and onto paper, and that you can clean up the mess of spelling, grammar etc. later on.

        Yoda says it best: "Do or do not. There is no try.” (I recommend the "do" part)

        He also says: "Always pass on what you have learned.” (which is the reason for my post)
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    • allauthor 5 monthsAllauthor
    • If you had the choice to rewrite any of your books, which one would it be and why?
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      • nathaliemlromer 5 months AuthorAuthor
      • This is an interesting question as I AM currently rewriting my earliest books, and Tainted Truth is the first one to reach its completion in the process. If a fellow author feels the so-called "impostor syndrome" (I did too!) and feels a book isn't good enough, you need to always remember that, as an independently published author, you can and SHOULD consider rewriting a book, and then get it professionally edited and professionally proofread; consider both a developmental edit and a copy-edit for the book. Never make the mistake I made early on in my career of choosing a "random editor" on the internet, and always go with direct recommendations from fellow authors. DON'T let the self-doubt beat you ever. I leave you with the best advice I received from fellow author and friend Orna Ross:

        "The more you write the better you get at it."
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      • christineucowin 2 monthsAuthor
      • I’ve day dreamed all my life and never realised I had to write books until I lived in Istanbul. There at the age of fifty, I found out I had to write book and ever since, I’ve just wrote. Now I can’t stop. Many times I want to throw it all in but there’s a part of me that’s driven to write.
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      • nathaliemlromer 5 months AuthorAuthor
      • I started my writing journey in November 2014. I started to realise that I had stories stuck in my mind that I wanted to get out there. The first short story I wrote became part of the book Tainted Truth.
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