Lee Gutkind, founding editor of Creative Nonfiction magazine and author of numerous books, including Almost Human: Making Robots Think, shares his insights for writers.
Q: What is your method for overcoming writer’s block?
A: I rarely experience writer's block because I write everyday; it is what I do in life, like exercise, reading the New York Times, etc. If I don't write it is because I am ill, exhausted (usually from too much writing the day before) or upset about something that may have happened in my life. But hardly. Writers write. Writers read. Writers think about writing and reading.
Q: What are your favorite or most helpful writing prompts?
A: When I need prompts, early on, I turned to my favorite writers and read from their work. We're talking Hemingway, Talese, Wolfe (Thomas), Heller, Graham Greene, Baldwin. Before you knew it, I was writing.
Q: What is the most valuable advice you received as a young writer?
A: Write everyday, don't miss a beat. Don't be so obsessed with publication. Give your work and yourself time to mature and develop. When you do publish, you want to look back and be pleased with what you have accomplished. This is what I have learned--not what others have told me.