10 Tips for Writing for Other People When You’re Used to Writing for Yourself

1. Don’t try to please everyone. It’s not possible.

1. Don’t try to please everyone. It’s not possible. Really — it’s not. Don’t set yourself up for unnecessary stress.

2. Don’t obsess over following trends. It’s good to know what’s popular in publishing, but you don’t want to write about things you aren’t passionate about just to get noticed. People see through that.

3. Write from your heart. If it matters to you, it will matter to someone else.

4.  Feedback is not a guarantee. Criticism often is. Don’t take it personally — but don’t be afraid to take some of it to heart, constructively, of course.

5. Imagine how a future reader might react to what you’re writing — it can be fun to dream.

6. Keep in mind that nothing really changes. You’re still telling a story. You’re just not going to be the only one reading that story, eventually.

7. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes and put them out into the world. It’s how we learn.

8. Let your words speak for you. You don’t have to explain or justify every line of your work.

9. Don’t worry about whether or not your potential audience might like it. Focus on writing things YOU like and are passionate about, and an audience will be drawn to that.

10. Let your love of stories carry you through your toughest points. Persist. You can do great things if you refuse to give up.


Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is an editor and writer, and a 12-time NaNoWriMo winner. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food, and Star Wars.


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