8 Rules for Writing Fiction

I came across this article in The Guardian the other day, and really liked the writing tips they gave for fiction authors. I think they work for nonfiction, and lots of other types of art as well…would you agree?

Are any of you working on a writing project? Or maybe another creative endeavor? Here are a few of the tips that resonated with me. Check out the original article, and tell me which tips you thought were the best….

  1. “Trust your reader. Not everything needs to be explained. If you really know something, and breathe life into it, they’ll know too.” -Esther Freud
  2. “The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.” -Neil Gaiman
  3. “Write only when you have something to say.” -David Hare
  4. “Never use the words ‘suddenly’ or ‘all hell broke loose’.” -Elmore Leonard
  5. “Do give the work a name as quickly as possible. Own it, and see it. Dickens  knew Bleak House was going to be called Bleak House before he started writing it. The rest must have been easy.” – Roddy Doyle
  6. “Finish the day’s writing when you still want to continue.” – Helen Dunmore
  7. “Do it every day. Make a habit of putting your observations into words and gradually this will become instinct. This is the most important rule of all and, naturally, I don’t follow it.” -Geoff Dyer
  8. “The way to write a book is to actually write a book. A pen is useful, typing is also good. Keep putting words on the page.” – Anne Enright
So, what projects are you working on?? I would so love to hear about them! I know lots of you have blogs….Any painters out there? Photographers? Writers? Do you have something you’re chipping away on??
P.S. I made these strawberry and cream biscuits last night…they were delicious! 
P.P.S. I found the above photo on this tumblr, but not sure of the original source…anyone know??
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2 Responses to 8 Rules for Writing Fiction

  1. I think the owner of the image is here: http://its-my-life96.deviantart.com/art/Dedicate-284557836

    A friend just showed me the other day how to use Google Image Search to find a photo credit — just go Google.com, click on Images, and then use the little camera button to upload the image or paste in its URL. It’s really accurate! I guess artists use this to see if people are stealing their images. Cool, right? 🙂

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