I was able to go to the SCBWI Writer's Retreat held out in Temecula, CA last weekend. Wow. We got to hear from four different literary editors, three authors, and they all had such great information for us. I can't write down exactly what they said (intellectual property privacy) but we got some great tips to take home. I was able to meet Mary Pearson ("The Adoration of Jenna Fox") and heard Marlene Perez ("Dead Is..." series) and Michael Reisman ("Simon Bloom - Gravity Keeper"). Awesome authors with wonderful tips, such as....
-Write everyday. EVERYDAY. Even if it's just one sentence. Get in the habit of writing.
-Edit your work for those "throw away" words that really don't matter. Like "really." And "like." ;)
-Keep a word count tally in an Excel document.You'll be able to track how productive you were.
-Write and write and write. Edit later. Get your words down and don't procrastinate. Don't give yourself writer's block.
-Try something new. Get fresh material. Read stuff you've never read before, watch TV shows and movies to get ideas, check out some non-fiction books. You never know where you'll find inspiration for your next project.
I was able to meet some fantastic writers and we sat together for the two days and had lunch together. It was a great time to connect with other YA lovers! I look forward to meeting up with these writers again and working on critiques together. :)