Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Author Guest Post: Jenelle Jack Pierre

Please welcome Jenelle Jack Pierre to the blog!


Mistakes Beginning Writers Should Avoid

By Jenelle Jack Pierre

We are all beginners at many points in life. We begin school. We begin relationships. We begin learning a new language. We begin numerous classes, from creative to academic.

Life is about new beginnings. With new beginnings come new opportunities, but also challenges and mistakes we did not expect. So it is with writing. These are the mistakes beginning writers should avoid.

1.View Your Writing Progress as So So.

Writing can be viewed as being so so when there is no definite aim,when we’re moseying along waiting to see the outcome of the situation. But as far as the writing ‘situation’ goes, what you create is fully under your control. Outside factors (reader response, book reviews, etc) may not be controllable, but inside factors (motivation and focus) is always fully within your hands.

2. Have Only One copy of Your Work

I began writing my first novel during my freshmen year of college. I was learning to balance my classes, work part-time, and write a novel at the same time. One morning, I was trying to finish up one of the middle chapters of my novel, but was in a hurry because I had to get to class for an exam. In those days, I typed on an old desktop and used a floppy disk to save material. (I still used a floppy disk with an external drive when I got my first laptop, realizing after I could just put a flashdrive directly into the laptop. Let’s just say I’m not that computer savvy). I clicked save and got up quickly, kicking the computer tower,and spoiling the disk. I took it to my campus’ tech team, but even they couldn’t recover the disk. At last, I had to retype eleven chapters based on my last printed draft.

Hence, the reason you should have more than one copy of your writing. Always save your manuscript to your flashdrive and one other place, your desktop or via email. Just in case.

3. Send Work out too Early

Many writers rush to put out their work because of outside variables. They feel they have to ‘compete’ with other writers and show the world what they’ve written. What they don’t realize is that there’s no need to gallop through the writing process. Extra time is what your work may need to become truly memorable. You want your writing to resonate with readers and not be added to the slush pile of books they regret buying.

4.Devour Everything on Writing

There is a lot of information available on writing. It’s easy to log onto the internet to check your email before you write, only to hours later log off. There are writing blogs, writing forums, tons of articles on writing, news on writing, etc. But all this ‘reading’ about writing adds up and may prove counterproductive. It’s important to learn about your craft, but your priority should be practicing your craft. So good luck and happy writing.


Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing these tips with all of us!

Jenelle on the web:

Jenelle's newest book, Before I Breath: A Novel, is available now!

Kalena Moore is a Montgomery High student who isn’t into school. Isaiah Wilkins is a classmate that her friends think is trouble. Life becomes more interesting when Kalena starts dating Isaiah, but soon things spin quickly out of control and she gets pregnant. Then Kalena sees that there's another side to her boyfriend. 

Determined to put her life back together, Kalena takes a path where there is no turning back.

Add on Goodreads

Buy from Amazon: Before I Breathe: A Novel