shaken & stirred

welcome to my martini glass

1.19.2005

makes with the wisdom

Janni Simner does, on writing and rules:

I think the fear is: if I don't follow the rule that writer over there uses, am I not a real writer?

We are all, of course, afraid we're not real writers. (Especially while we're, say, composing rants for our weblogs instead of, well, writing. But again I digress.)

There's no "you can't do this," in writing, though there's always "you did this badly" or "this doesn't seem to be working for this story" or "you did this and I'm not interested in your tale because of it." There's even "This story because it sucks large rocks through a straw."

But there's no "this story doesn't work because you relied on pathetic fallacies" or "this story doesn't work because you didn't follow 17 and a half point plot structure" or "this story doesn't work because you failed to read the latest book on how to properly build a bestselling career."

There are no rules. And anyone who finds this a terrifying thought--who wants to be told what to do and how to do it, who isn't comfortable at least some of the time feeling their way through--is possibly going to find writing an uncomfortable thing to pursue.


This was so, so what I needed to read today, Ms. Simner.

And if you do it badly, you just keep going until you get it right.

Thx.

5 Comments:

  • At 10:16 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Oh, I like that. Thank you for sharing it.

    Of course, I read it and nod in agreement while also balefully eyeing the pile of books on writing on my shelf...

    - Darice

     
  • At 10:20 PM , Blogger The Great RDini said...

    GREAT! You just watch you Gwenda Bond, You. Now my critiques are gonna be shorter than ever!!! :-)

     
  • At 10:21 PM , Blogger The Great RDini said...

    If it is possibe for my critiques to be shorter? Hmmmmmmmmmmm.

     
  • At 12:15 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Can I also add: there's no right way to live a writer's life? If you're a writer, then by definition the life you're living is a writer's life.

    EEK

     
  • At 12:29 AM , Blogger Janni said...

    Hey, glad the post was helpful. It's what I needed to hear today too, I think, which is why I decided to rant on it. :-) It's one of those things I've done a couple go-arounds with.

    Can I also add: there's no right way to live a writer's life? If you're a writer, then by definition the life you're living is a writer's life.I like that, too!

    -- Janni

     

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