Do you want to write or be a writer? There’s a difference. Writers write. People who want to be writers just talk about it a lot. No one likes an empty promise.
Work on a piece until it feels “done.” Revise and then let it rest. (It’s like bread dough. It has to rise!) Wait at least a month. Reread—aloud—and revise. Format according to standards or submission guidelines. Start submitting.
Avoid heavy editing while you write. Just be a writer! Writing and editing are different brain functions that can work at cross purposes with each other. Take a break from the work before donning your editor’s hat.
Know your strengths and weaknesses. Writing (and editing) are skills that improve with time and practice. if you are a shoddy grammarian or speller, use spell/grammar check. Look up words/phrases you aren’t certain about to verify that you’re using them correctly. These mistakes can cost you a sale as not all editors are willing to edit. Some want work that is perfectly polished and ready for publication.
Learn how to read your work well. At all costs, avoid “poet voice.” There are tons of YouTube videos of wonderful readings by writers and actors to enjoy for free. (Listen to this: https://youtu.be/julaDCR5iB8) Practice reading for friends and by yourself, in front of a mirror. Record yourself and watch it back so that you can see how you present yourself to an audience. What so you like and want to keep? What's uniquely you? What can you eliminate to become a better speaker (nervous habits, avoiding eye contact with audience, etc.)?
Don’t pay for anything if you can’t afford it. Contests, submission fees and reading fees support the publication and the people behind it, but there are many, many, publications that don’t charge anything. It can be tempting to fall into the cash prize trap (cue the major award leg lamp), but wouldn’t you rather eat, or pay your SDG&E bill instead?
Network. Participate in something, both live and online. Get out and see writers at work (live storytelling, story or poetry slams, readings, literary events etc.) Meet people, and make friends and allies in the literary community. It’s kinda like sliding into an editor’s DMs.
Be a good literary citizen. Support your network and friends. Offer help and accept help when needed. Attend events; read and buy publications from writers you want to support; (No public trash talking.) Be gracious. You’re building your reputation—you want a good one, right?
The magic happens outside your comfort zone. Go there. Transformation springs from explored silences, and discomfort is a rich seed bed for change and growth.
A) Do the work. B) Let the work do the work. You created the work, but you are not the work. It's a collaboration between you and the collective, human unconscious. A child shares the genetic material of its parents but is a separate, independent entity, and so is your story, poem, book or essay. You created and nurtured them with care and love, but ultimately they have to speak for themselves.
Atomicscribbler.com (PC)--Write your novel one scene or one chapter at a time. Drag and drop scenes inside your Document tree until it’s just the way you want it. Store images, PDFs, bookmarks to websites in a research section.
NewNovelist.com (PC)—Take notes of your inspirational ideas whenever they hit you.
Nisus Writer Pro (Mac)—Although it looks similar to the conventional MS Word on first sight, it provides a much prettier design and awesome features that make it one of the greatest word processors you could possibly use.
OmniOutliner (Mac)—Provides all the features you need in order to start constructing a novel and get it written faster than you expected. You can use the tool for writing, as well as structuring information and creating a focused frame that will preserve the logical flow of your story.
WriteRoom (Mac)—WriteRoom will enable you to write in a distraction-free environment with simplicity that inspires your brain to stay absorbed by the current task.