Category «Mistakes»

Stopping when stuck (Mistake #119)

I don’t agree with all of Jeanette Winterson’s advice in this Guardian article from the beginning of the decade, but I do like the following: Never stop when you are stuck. You may not be able to solve the problem, but turn aside and write something else. Do not stop altogether. She meant it about …

Brexit II (Mistake #118)

It’s been well over a year since I wrote Brexit Part I. Where has the time gone, my friends? Even though we have since decided not to remain, the opportunities to write about Brexit do remain. In fact, I’d say they’ve grown. Had we voted to stay, I reckon they’d have declined. Some consolation, perhaps, …

You have one job (Mistake #117)

If being a writer and only a writer isn’t working out, then it may be time for a change-up. This isn’t about giving up being a writer – although I have written about that before, in Mistake #108, and don’t believe it’s something you should never consider – but about being more than a writer. …

The single-sitting read (Mistake #114)

There had been no plan to try to do it. Once I’d decided to, once I’d moved past the half-way mark, there was not much consideration for the fact that it would be my first time, were I to succeed. But I was closer to the end than the beginning. It seemed doable. And by then I was …

Can Cook, Won’t Cook (Mistake #113)

Although I now specialise in allergies and intolerances, before that I used to cover diet and nutrition. I eventually got a bit disillusioned with writing about this vitamin, that mineral and those antioxidants. Did my readers really need to know all this detail? Was being informed on such complex matters really necessary? In today’s food culture, I think …

Desperation (Part II) (Mistake #112)

In Desperation (Part I), I wrote the following, which I make no apologies for repeating, this time with emphasis: “Freelance writer” tells the editor you’re available for work.    “Available for work” tells the editor you’re desperate for work.    It’s no good being desperate, because editors can sniff out desperation a mile off, and …

Rejection isn’t personal (Mistake #111)

“Don’t take it to heart.” “It’s them – not you.” “It’s nothing personal.” Share news of a rejection of your work to a friend or loved one and I’ll bet they’ll respond with one of the above – or a variation of. They’re just saying what is expected of them, and being nice. You know …

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