Congratulations to our featured client, Keith Buie! In 2007, Keith’s energetic and punctuated prose caught our attention. Since then, we’ve enjoyed his true-to-life dialogue and ability to show his characters’ layered personalities through rich scenes rather than transparent narration. Since then, he’s had a steady stream of successes, including journal publications, securing a literary agent for his first novel, and being included in a very special anthology. Watch Keith’s one-minute video to hear how he deals with the loneliness of writing and why you’ll have reason to remember his name.
In Keith Buie’s Words:
I am alone. When I write, I am stuck inside the dark, twisted corners of my own mind, following my protagonist down a dark alley, into a lover’s arms, or simply into his own coffin. It is a lonely journey, but every writer has to make the journey alone, finally stepping over the finish line when he types those two last words: The End.
But the end is merely the beginning. Which of the thousands of markets to send my work? Which agent will see my vision and believe in my work? Was that third comma in my second to last paragraph actually supposed to be a semicolon?
Every writer needs help, and Writer’s Relief is my writing team. I am alone as I write this now, but I can rest assured that, before anyone reads my words, Writer’s Relief will proofread and make sure every comma, conjunction, or independent clause is exactly where it is supposed to be. Thank you, Writer’s Relief, for never making me feel alone.
About Keith Buie:
Keith Buie lives in Cleveland, Ohio. His work has appeared in Eleven Eleven, The MacGuffin, Natural Bridge, Quiddity International Literary Journal, Rio Grande Review, Willard & Maple, and Metal Scratches. His short story/novel excerpt, “The Routine,” is forthcoming in an anthology edited by best-selling author Chuck Palahniuk (Fight Club, Choke). Keith recently finished his first novel and has signed with McIntosh & Otis Literary Agency. He is currently working on his second novel.
Chuck Palahniuk!?! NO WAY! That’s awesome! Way to go, Keith!
First want to say congrats! I’m about to embark on the periods of loneliness you spoke of. I am a person new to the writing experience. Any words of wisdom?
Get involved in a writing community. Or two. Or five. This is a must. I felt alone until I found many other tortured writing souls on the internet. Fellow writer feedback on your work is priceless. Mom and Dad will tell you your story is great. But “fellow online writer” will tell you your protagonist is a hollow cardboard cut-out of a human being. You will want to find him and kiss him for his honesty.
Take writing classes. Lots of them. Professional feedback from writing instructors on your work is even more priceless. But not all instructors are created equal. Sample lots of them until you find the ones that are truly brilliant. Then become a sponge and soak up everything they have to offer.
Read good writing and then dissect it to find out why it is good writing.
Read bad writing and make a vow to never do that in your own work.
Carry a notebook with you everywhere you go. Everywhere. I do my best writing in short, five minute bursts when I should be working, eating, driving, sleeping, etc…
Do not worry about getting your work published. Worry first about perfecting your craft. Publication will seek you out once you do.
And most of all, just be patient. This is the hardest part. You will write badly before you write mediocrely. You will write blandly before you write scenes that show even hints of quality. But if you keep writing, you will see improvement. And you will become an addict, wanting to see even more improvement. Keep that momentum going, and never look back.