Ugly Dad’s Unsolicited Writing Advice #2: The 5 things every writer needs to have within arm’s length when being a writer

Hello! Here comes another edition of Ugly Dad’s unsolicited writing advice. People are never asking me: “Ugly Dad, how can I be a well writerer?”

or “Ugly Dad, what are the five things every writer needs to have at arm’s length while writing?” Well just because no one asked doesn’t mean I’m not full of unsolicited advice. So let’s talk about things EVERY writer needs close by while they work on their stuff.

Remember, these are must-haves if you’re serious about writing.

1. Social Media

Social media is important because you’re not a writer unless people KNOW it, and the ONLY ONLY ONLY way they’re going to know is if you tell them on social media.

Things to share/post about:

-Trouble naming your main character

-Word counts and whether you missed, hit, or exceeded your goal (only admit to missing your goal if something interesting [to you only] made you miss it, e.g. “I was going to finish this chapter but I came across this great book on the craft, and I just couldn’t put it down. #writerproblems”

-Your long-winded opinions on political and social issues

-Any question that consults the “hive mind” (and they don’t even have to be writing related. They can be an banal as “Hive mind: I’m in the vitamin/supplement aisle, which ones should I buy?”

-Memes about writing and how you should be doing it, but you’re too busy/distracted/uninspired

-Complain about publishers/agents (the lack of either in your life)

-Trouble naming your main character’s spouse/lover/friend/kid

2. Box of Tissues


Writers spend an exorbitant amount of time crying and/or masturbating (often simultaneously if they’re REALLY good writers) so tissues are a must for writers. My suggestion is go to Costco or Sam’s Club and pick up a pallet or two. You WILL use all of them and saving money means more $ to spend on books about writing!

3. Coffee/Tea


Writers love coffee/tea and you should have some close by to give you a little bump, to help you relax, or to throw in your own face when the futility of everything begins to overwhelm you, and you feel more and more disconnected from reality and you just need a good scalding shock to bring you back.

Hot beverages are great for this, and then you can post your healing selfies on your social media and talk about the stories the event inspired even if you won’t ever write them.

4. A Loaded Gun

You may be saying, “Ugly Dad, I don’t need that,” but you do. You may also be saying, “I’m never going to give up on my dream!” Well, Good for you, kiddo. But you’ll want to have a loaded piece anyway because achieving your dreams probably won’t make you as happy as you think, and that realization, that achievement is ultimately empty, will help you accept that nothing is going to change and all that work you put in will never EVER fill that empty space inside you because there isn’t one. You ARE the empty space.

And in the much more likely event you don’t achieve your dream by 63, then oh boy! If you can’t BE Hemingway at least you can still go out like him!


5. Writing Device

Whether it’s a computer, typewriter, or even a pencil and paper, this is the only piece that’s optional for a writer. Do yourself a favor and exercise that option. Don’t ever start writing. It’s dumb. And if you do it, you’re dumb.

Now buy my books. Please. Love you.

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