14 November 2012

“The first draft is for you. The second is for the reader. The third is for the hater.”

— Neil Strauss

(Neil Strauss is a New York Times Bestseller and the author of Everyone Loves You When You're Dead, and he’s speaking with Tim Ferriss on CreativeLive.com right now!)


HIS TIPS: 
  1. Write based on the premise that NOBODY CARES; then make them care.
  2. The first draft is for you. The second is for the reader. The third is for the hater.
  3. If you can take a scene out and it doesn’t change the whole story, it has to go—no matter how good it is.
  4. Tim (and Neil too) puts Monday as the minutia day—catching up on email and junk things. But he’ll only mess with that stuff on that one day per week.
  5. Neil even automates his food delivery so he doesn’t have to choose what to eat each day. It helps remove decisions so he can focus on what’s important.
  6. Neil reads his book out loud to his friends, but he doesn’t even ask for feedback. He can tell when he’s losing them from their facial expressions.
  7. If you can sell 10K copies, a publisher will pick you up. No matter what. Also, if you can get on the A-list in Asia, you’ve made it too.
  8. Tim outlines. Neil doesn’t.
  9. Use “TK” in your document when you want to come back to something (it’s a simple “term” to search, and that combination isn’t found in the English language).
  10. Tim: If the topic isn’t fun to research, it won’t be fun to read. So you better love it.