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FRANK WESTCOTT

* THE MUSIC POET *



"WELCOME... TO...


 'SO! ~ SO YOU WANT 


TO BE A WRITER!' "


             


Frank Westcott

~ BE A WRITER ~

"ON WRITING & LIFE"

SO! ~  SO YOU WANT TO BE A WRITER

                                                                    © Frank Westcott, 2021. All rights reserved & all that legal stuff.                                                           

~

for Sandy... Segment 1


ON WRITING & LIFE!

*

So! ~ So You Want to be a Writer?

*

New beginnings do not mean you give up the deep, true you inside, who you truly are. You are free to be more of that you.

F.W. 21st Century

*

SEGMENT 1: “FAME, FORTUNE & FREEDOM”


Somewhere along the way and for whatever reasons, you decided to become a writer. This decision, if followed through to its natural end, may very well affect everything you do for the rest of your life. It may bring you fame, fortune and freedom. Assuredly, it will bring you much pain, heartache and toil.


During the early stages of your career, you will be criticized by friends, family and neighbours, as well as by people you don't even know. Should you become even moderately successful, along with esteem from peers and peasants, you will feel a certain ostracization due to jealousy and misunderstandings regarding the dedication, perseverance and timeless hours the writer's craft demands.


Throughout SO! ~ SO YOU WANT TO BE A WRITER? , I hope to share with you, as much as can possibly be transmitted via the written word, the knowledge I have gained over the past forty-seven years as author, one-time publisher and one-time teacher.

*

Success on your part will depend largely upon your ability to discipline yourself, develop a businesslike approach to writing and be extremely objective towards your work.


And believe me, there is no other way. You will need all the self-discipline you can muster. You will need to be a businessperson and you will need to develop objectivity more than likely, foreign to you now.


At this time, it will be to your advantage to get rid of any notion that because you believe yourself to be talented, all you have to do is sit down at a typewriter (ah… my early days) and you will magically write a masterpiece. Thoughts such as these are sheer, utter nonsense. No one has done it, is doing it or will ever do it.


Good writing takes years of hard work, an athlete's discipline and the dedication of an Olympic Champion.

You may hear stories of authors who whipped off a manuscript in record time, sent it to the first publisher listed in the yellow pages and immediately had a best-seller. Bull!


Countless hours went into that manuscript.


Before it was published, there were likely tears, sweat and blood. There may even have been a lifetime writing page after unsuccessful page, pasting rejections to the bathroom walls, and praying, and hoping, and working and pulling oneself together time-and-again to give it one more try.


You may have heard or read that Ernest Hemingway wrote THE SUN ALSO RISES in six weeks. Thoreau's WALDEN reads as spontaneously as if it came right out of his head onto the printed page. It didn't. He labored over WALDEN writing and re-writing.


In fact, seven years elapsed between Henry David Thoreau's leaving Walden Pond and WALDEN's publication.

According to literary historians, Hemingway did write THE SUN ALSO RISES in six weeks, but what of the hundred rejections on work before that? What of the years spent sending dispatches to the Hearst Syndicate and to the Toronto Star? What about the earlier publication of THREE STORIES AND TEN POEMS and IN OUR TIME? What about these years? Years he spent developing his craft before THE SUN ALSO RISES.


Can you imagine Lev Tolstoy or Gustave Flaubert sitting down and having WAR AND PEACE or MADAME BOVARY come out letter perfect the first time?


There was work, and sweat and long toil before completion. They encountered ridicule and suffering. Flaubert had to contend with pornography charges in the courts and Tolstoy spent over six years between 1863 and 1869 working on WAR AND PEACE.


In more modern times (mine), consider James A. Michener or Irving Wallace rattling off one of their heavily researched novels without pause for character development, plot delineation or topic investigation.


After these examples, and there are many-many more, I hope you realize there is no way any budding word-pusher can ever hope to achieve success unless she/he is willing to put out, and put out and put out until hopefully, one day, she/he is a bonafide writer.


So! So you want to be a writer?


Forget the three F’s once & for all! The Three-F’s? FAME-FORTUNE-FREEDOM!

*

(Next Someday Segment: Forget The Three-F’s Once & For All)

*

ABOUT ME… FRANK!

Bin writing professionally since 1975. Sing, play… instruments. Write songs. Love my grandkids. Love nature. Hike. Think. Enjoy… this life thing we are on! Do yoga. Write. Sometimes do karate… but my way now. Read. Perform. Smile.

*

www.FrankWestcottPoet.com

*Winner of the Gloria Vanderbilt/Exile Short Fiction Award 2011 for my short story The Poet.

* Shortlisted for the Gwendolyn MacEwen Poetry Prize 2014 for my 2000 word poem And She Lay Herself Down.

*Inducted into McMaster U's Alumni Gallery in the early 1980's honouring my writing and music lives.

Music & the written word are two of my passions. The creation of... Love imagination! 

*

YOU TUBE:

www.youtube.com/channel/UC4_XDUNt7DVv0w7gZ8hkQlA

FACEBOOK:

www.facebook.com/frank.westcott.9

SOUNDCLOUD:

https://www.soundcloud.com/frank-westcott

REVERBNATION:

https://www.reverbnation.com/control_room/artist/5158327/songs

WRITERS’ UNION OF CANADA:

https://www.writersunion.ca/member/frank-westcott

* 

THE BACKGROUND

This version/segment of  So! ~ So You Want to be a Writer! was first published in the magazine Write Away in May 2021. A link to that in the magazine is here for you. Enjoy & this article comes from my book So You Want to be a Writer which came out many years ago, but I have adapted it & this, am that is, in the process of adapting it for you here and elsewhere, to modernize it to now, & more I have learned since... as this bit is... for the 21st Century!  FUN! THIS!! Here is the link to this first segment in Write Away Magazine:

https://online.pubhtml5.com/aqbh/veyf/#p=65     








 

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