Sorry – that’s a bit of a clickbait title, I know. But how often have you seen that kind of writing article? How often have writing reference books stated their stances in stark, all-or-nothing, my-way-or-the-highway terms?
Cut out all prologues.
Burn all adverbs.
If you don’t plot, you’re a mess.
If you do plot, you’re a robot.
(Did I mention that the advice is often conflicting?)
I am a contrarian. Much of my writing career has been motivated by sheer spite. I’m not proud of this, but I know myself, and I know that if you tell me I can’t do something, I’m going to laugh and wave at you with my proof of accomplishment at some point. It’s just my nature.
I’ve been writing professionally for nearly twenty years now. In that time, I’d like to think that I’ve learned some things, about the industry, about writing, and about writers. In that time, there is one fact I believe, profoundly, when it comes to writing and publishing. [Read more…]