Recently, I received some awesome advice from a writer, and it couldn’t have arrived at a better time, as I am in the middle of the “editing trenches” for my third book.
As usual, every so often, I reach out to the mentors from the book Get Up. I want to learn more about what they meant when they were asked:
“WHAT WOULD YOU TELL YOUR TEENAGE SELF?”
And of course, I want to know about other scoops as well. You know, stuff like hobbies, what they like to eat for dinner, and what really makes their day. I’m such an inquisitive person.
Or, maybe just nosy. 🙂
Out of the over 60 mentors, there are only two fellow authors who share the same love for the magic of words as I do. Just the other day, I had the opportunity to interview one of the authors:
I.J. Schecter (@ijtheschekkie). Best-selling author and proud father of three.
As I sent him several questions, little did I know that most of his advice would be so meaningful – to me!
In addition, not only does every word hit home, I find that I.J. chooses his words so strategically, that the fewer words you use, the better and more powerful it becomes.
Talk about awesome advice from a writer.
You know the drill, here we go!
What does I.J. stand for?
It stands for Ian Jason. My sister, who is 18 months my senior, apparently uttered “I.J.” soon after I arrived, and my parents went with it.
What do you prefer: writing books, short stories, or blogs/articles for websites, and why?
It’s hard to choose, since I love writing everything, except perhaps academic essays. I adore the challenge and exhilaration of writing books (which you can see by the range of topics I write about) and am equally excited by the precision and economy needed for creating great short stories or poems. Every part of the process is thrilling to me.
Name three things you have learned as a writer.
- Remember that everything you write makes you better, whether it gets published or not.
- Allow yourself brief responses to rejection, then get back to work.
- Be merciless in revision. You’ll thank yourself.
Editor’s note: I’ll be placing this awesome advice from a writer on my bathroom mirror. And on my fridge. And… 😉
What has been the most meaningful lesson you have learned as a father?
Your kids need your love the most when it seems like they deserve it the least.
How do you relax?
Write. Read. Exercise. Play sports. Watch movies and sitcoms with my kids. Spend time with family and friends.
Let’s dive into your quote:
“If you are lucky to have grandparents – spend time with them. Ask questions about their lives and the lessons they’ve learned. Once they are no longer with us, you are going to wish to have asked and known more.”
It’s easy to think of grandparents narrowly – say, as the people whose house you go to for regular dinners and/or who spoil you indiscriminately. But there’s so much more richness to discover there. They’ve led long lives and have deep wisdom to share. A relationship with a grandparent is an indescribable gift.
Thank you, I.J., for sharing your meaningful advice in the book Get Up. Grandparents are an honour to have if you’re lucky. Not to mention the love to give to your children. Thank you, for your merciless and truthful writing advice for anyone else out there who faces a blank screen on the daily, like I.J. and I.