Writing is, by its nature, a solitary activity. And fiction writing even more so. At least with my journalism or copy-writing I get to talk to people on a regular basis. But my fiction? Well generally that gets squeezed into the early hours before many people are awake and even if I’m writing later in the day, who wants interruptions when the muse is present?
But we need feedback on our work – which is why writing groups and networks are a good idea. And we need to interact and hear from others who can shine a light on the path that we are trying to traverse. And that’s why I love YouTube.
YouTube has so many good videos of writers (and other industry professionals) talking about the craft of writing. There are two TEDx talks I particularly like: the first being literary agent Jonny Geller’s titled “What Makes a Best Seller?” and secondly novelist Nathan Filer’s titled “How to write an award-winning bestselling first novel”. It’s a wildly ambitious title but it is full of very useful information for any wanna-be novelist.
But my most recent find is a fantastic set of videos titled “The National Emerging Writer Programme” funded by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature in association with www.writing.ie . A series of 30 or so videos interviewing three Irish writers: Carlo Gebler, Declan Hughes and Sinead Moriarty on various aspects of the craft from setting writing goals, to structure, to character, dialogue and so on.
They are fascinating and I can’t recommend them enough. If you want some inspiration or are stuck in some way one of these might just help you out. Here’s the introductory first video and from there you can hop around YouTube and watch the rest. They range in length from a minute to up to ten minutes and there’s something to learn in each and every one of them.
Don’t sit down and watch them all at once – you’ll never be able to take them all in and more importantly you won’t get any writing done for a while.