Exploding the 10,000-hour Myth

How to write emotion

Recently I wrote an article where I pointed out that as a young writer, I had heard that it takes seven years of practice before the average person breaks into publishing.

That seven-year rule has always seemed somehow arbitrary to me, yet it does sound an awful lot like the popular notion that “It takes about 10,000 hours to master just about any discipline.”

I decided to try to reach a publishable level with my fiction in one year. In doing so, I not only managed to break into publishing in one year, selling short stories and obtaining a three-novel contract, I also won several awards.

It has always seemed to me that route practice of a craft isn’t enough. You can’t just show up at college and become a brain surgeon. You have to bring a certain amount of passion and discipline with you. You have to analyze your work, make adjustments, and push forward. You can’t be content just to learn from others, you have to try to make your own discoveries.

Now, the idea that it takes 10,000 hours to master just about any field of expertise is coming under attack, in part from the person who popularized the notion.

Anders Ericsson, the Florida State University psychologist whose research on expertise spawned the 10,000-hour rule of thumb, has reportedly said, “You don’t get benefits from mechanical repetition, but by adjusting your execution over and over to get closer to your goal.”

I like that notion. It’s one of the things that I teach in my writing workshops. No mindless following of instructions is allowed. Instead, I try to inspire authors to push themselves in new directions, to write things unlike what they’ve seen before.

So I thought that I would pass the article along for your edification.
http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2014/01/22/daniel-goleman-focus-10000-hours-myth/

Good luck on today’s writing goals!

Twenty years ago, Dave taught his legendary 318R writing class at BYU. Some of his students included Brandon Sanderson (Way of Kings), Dan Wells (I am Not a Serial Killer), and Stephenie Meyer (Twilight). Dave’s approach worked well because he put emphasis not just on writing but also on the business of writing, so that an author doesn’t waste years of his or her life by making costly career mistakes. We have a few audit seats still open where you can be a "fly on the wall" when you audit it, but we will be closing registrations soon. Click here to Learn more about the class.
Consider joining the Apex Writers Online Writing Group If you’re a highly motivated writer committed to doing what it takes to make it in the publishing world, this group is for you. With Apex, you’ll be mentored by one of the world’s most successful writing teachers, David Farland. Once you join, you’ll be given access to all Dave’s online courses and seminars, such as The Advanced Story Puzzle Writing Enchanting Prose Editing to Greatness Promising Starts Magnificent Middles Powerful Endings Publishing in 2021 And Many More—(a $2400 value) In fact, new lessons are added weekly, all designed to help you either break into the publishing industry or move you up the ladder to becoming a bestseller. You’ll even get in on Dave’s calls where you can ask your own questions and get answers. You’ll be invited to join Study Groups—to go through workshop materials, study genres, publishers, and agents Writing Groups—to critique each other’s work Accountability Groups—to help you set and meet goals Writing Rings—where you can join like-minded authors and help boost each other’s sales by advertising to one another’s fan base Our private forum where you can research topics and network Our closed Facebook Group—network with hundreds of writers. We want to help bestselling careers, and you can do that better by networking with hundreds of writers who will help you boost your signal on social media when you sell your books, train you to market your work well, and help you break into Hollywood as your sales numbers grow. JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis had the Inklings. Ernest Hemingway worked with Faulkner and Steinbeck to achieve greatness. Now it is your turn! So what are you waiting for? The annual cost for the group is only $239, and you can pay monthly. Just click here to fill out an application.

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