Brandon Sanderson's advice for aspiring writers

Brandon Sanderson's advice for aspiring writers

New York Times best-selling author and BYU alum Brandon Sanderson teaches a creative writing class at Brigham Young University for one semester each year. Every time he teaches the class, one or two of his students go pro. Recent examples include Charlie Holmberg (Paper Magician series; Disney currently owns the movie rights) and Brian McClellan (Powdermage Trilogy; his most recent book was ranked in the top 10 on Goodreads’ “Can’t Wait SciFi/Fiction” list).

Brandon himself is a student of Runelords’ author David Farland, who also mentored Brandon Mull (Fablehaven), James Dashner (The Maze Runner), Stephenie Meyer (Twilight) and Dan Wells (The Partials).

interacting with students are remembering how exciting this all was when it was fresh and new that's really valuable as a writer I had written 13 novels without selling any of them if I had looked at those early books of mine that had not turned out very well and said I'm just a terrible writer my product of my writing time were these terrible books I should give up I would not be here usually in a given class there are a handful who are really serious about doing this usually I have one two two who go pro or semi-pro every year think about what is this writing time doing for me how much better am I getting what about my process can I understand better treating like something that you're gonna dedicate some time to and you're going to practice with and don't stress about publication stress getting better at the art and if you do that the rest will fall in line you are the product of your writing time the book is a byproduct taking the class was extremely helpful for me when I took the class so the biggest part was seeing a professional writer and saying okay this is a real job because this person does it has their job and that I think that's one of the reasons why I keep teaching it I want that to be available to as many people as possible it helps students who might be in that stage where they're already writing pretty well but they're not sure if this is an actual job be able to talk to someone who it is their job yeah that was a big thing for me it's cuz I took many creative writing classes at BYU and Brandes was the only one that talked about the business side of it he's the only one talked about taxes we had a class about taxes you know the only reason I ever sent out my first query was because he made it a requirement so now it's a huge deal for me I saw what I wanted to be at in X many years right and I reached it and that was like huge because not a lot of people get to see firsthand what they're going for there's no guarantee you can become a writer but people pretend that it's this one in 10,000 sort of thing you're never to do this well the clout year I took the class from Dave four of the 20 people became professionals in the field to editors to writers okay every year I've tucked the class someone has gone on to be a pro usually two people you can do this


  1. I always look up Brandon Sanderson interviews/talks for writing motivation. Despite being only 2.5 minutes this may have been the most motivating talk I've heard him give. Thank you! Much needed!

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