Sandra Bernotaitė – Persuasive Writing for Creative Living


What do you do, how did you get there? 

I write. Ten years ago, I went to live in Australia where I’ve got perfect conditions to work as a full time independent writer. Last year I came back to Lithuania with four published books under my belt and an experience of an editor. I write a blog and teach creative writing. Also I am a chief editor of the magazine “Pasaulio lietuvis” (“World’s Lithuanian”). Its readers are mainly Lithuanian diaspora, but my aim is to build a bridge between the ones who left our country and live in the world and the ones who stay here, but somehow feel that mentally they belong to the world.

What is “global Lithuanian” in your opinion and how do you think Lithuania as country can benefit from the network of Lithuanians around the world? 

Problems tend to look grand and fatal if you focus on them too much. The healthy approach to it is to step aside, put your situation into perspective, then the problems become manageable. Living in Lithuania for longer time, one starts to feel that this country is the center of the world and the local political issues blow into Apocalyptic proportions. Global Lithuanians are those who think globally, although they can live locally or anywhere, or travel around a lot. They do not grow walls in their minds, they are more tolerant and liberal, they learn flexibly and spread the ideas and experience and share the good practice. Lithuania most certainly would benefit from the networking of this kind of people who bring back their world view and invest their time into the local enterprises. Changes come slowly and for some they are painful, but for the others they are just natural, and we can learn from them just by listening to their ideas or just by having them around.

What would be 3 main tips for good text? 

A good text has to have power, and it is powerful when (1) it is cognitively fluent; (2) has a message or an idea or is raising an important question; (3) it is honest and you can hear the author’s written voice in it. All of this can seem quite simple, but it is hard to achieve. Perhaps you can also say that what we are looking in a good text is an authenticity, but many writers strive for it all their creative lives. However, we need to write, practice our craft, emotionally connect with our readers and enrich our world with good stories.