Tuesday, August 2, 2011

What's the Worst Writing Advice You've Ever Received?

Just a short and sweet post today.

Based on some of the buzz I'm reading on a few colleagues' blogs, it sounds like there will be a few new folks joining the ranks of the full-time freelancers within a few weeks. So this got me thinking.

Luckily, freelancers are among some of the nicest folks I've ever had the pleasure to know. I can't tell you how many useful tips I've picked up, between websites, blogs, resources, or just emailing folks directly. But for all of the great and helpful tips that are out there, writers can dish out some pretty crummy advice, too. Unfortunately, freelancing is a lot of trial and error, but that doesn't mean you can't protect yourself from the outset as much as possible.

So, fellow writers, I ask you--"What's the worst writing advice you've ever received?"

I guess my response is pretty standard--"write what you know". I hear that and I roll my eyes. I'm a pretty voracious reader and I like to think that I know a little bit about a lot of things, but I also like learning for learning's sake, so if I find something that piques my interest, you'd better believe I want to learn all I can about it, and then share some of that knowledge with others. If I only wrote what I knew, I'd have to take down my writer's shingle already, because my well of knowledge has been exhausted several times over.

This advice would be closely followed by writing in one genre, or for one type of client. In today's business world particularly, businesses of all stripes are finding that diversifying might prove to be their saving grace. And anyway, if you stick to one type of writing project, wouldn't that get boring pretty quickly? Part of the beauty of freelancing is that we have the freedom to pick and choose, and dabble in different types of projects. We won't like everything that comes across our desks, of course, but I personally like the variety and diversity of the projects I take on.

What about you? What advice should "newbie" freelancers take with a grain of salt?

No comments:

Post a Comment