Random Useful Stuff – Lisa Nicol

Hey all! I think my time is up.

I have loved blogging on at the Clubhouse but I think it’s someone else’s turn. To finish up I thought I’d just leave a few random thoughts you might find useful.

Random thought #1

People say if you want to be a writer, you need to read a lot. That is true. But I would also say listen to heaps of music, watch films and TV, look at art on the street or in a gallery, read comics and keep your eyes and hearts open to the world around you.

Random thought #2 

Carry a notebook at all times. Everyone tells you this but it is essential. A plumber doesn’t turn up without a wrench. A fireman doesn’t turn up without a hose.  A writer should not go anywhere without a notebook – or some method of writing stuff down.

Random thought #3 

Write down ANYTHING you want in your notebook. Anything that amuses you, fascinates you, captures your attention, makes you sad, an idea for a character, a dream, something someone said that you really liked, anything!

All those bits and pieces are like a potter’s clay. You can use them to create stuff. Sometimes they come together to build a world, sometimes they spark an idea for a story. Sometimes they become dialogue and a lot of the time they become nothing. Which reminds me, never worry someone might read what you have written in your notebook and think it’s dumb. What you write is just for you. And by the way, I write HEAPS of dumb stuff in my notebooks. Heaps and heaps and heaps. But in amongst the dumb stuff, little bits and pieces shine. 2% shiny, 98% rubbish.

Random thought #4

Becoming great at anything is about 95% hard work and 5% natural talent. The people who end up great at stuff are often not the people who were born with a special talent but those who work really hard at their craft. At some point, the work becomes more important than the special talent. Which is great. It means we’re all in the game. We just need to work hard if we want to be great at something.

Random thought #5

Inspiration is a flash. Good ideas are like lightening. The real work is in grabbing hold of that flash, not letting it go  (here’s where your notebook comes in handy) and then trying to turn it into something that people can read or see or hold or hear, depending on what you’re creating.

Random thought #6

NEVER listen to that Debbie Downer person in your head who tells you you’re no good.

Every writer, painter, musician – in fact every person – has a Debbie Downer in their head telling them they’re no good, that they’re a fake and they should give up.

Unfortunately, Debbie Downer never goes away. An essential skill for a writer is to learn how to ignore Debbie Downer.

Random thought #7

Taking a break is good, not lazy.

Walk away. Do something different for ten minutes. Jump up and down. Move around. Somehow, your brain works better when you move your feet.

Random thought #8

Life can be pretty random sometimes.  When you get stuck with a story, why not try throwing in something completely random. It just might work!

Best of luck everyone. Most importantly, have fun!!

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