• It is said that good things come to those who wait. I believe that good things come to those who work. - Wilt Chamberlain
  • A professional writer is an amateur who didn't quit. - Richard Bach
  • You don't find time to write. You make time. It's my job. - Nora Roberts
  • Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most. - Buddha
  • Luck is when an opportunity comes along and you're prepared for it. - Denzel Washington
  • I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying. - Michael Jordan

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Robert's Rules of Writing

For all you writers out there, I'm currently reading Robert's Rules of Writing written by Robert Masello. It's entertaining and informative. I highly recommend it. I'm only half way through and have already found many helpful suggestions I'd like to share:
-  At the end of your writing day jot down notes for where you think the story is headed so you can jump right in the next day.
-  Don't read books similar to what you're writing or you'll lose your voice. The better the writer you are reading the more you are at risk of assimilating his/her style into your own.
-  Write what you like to read. (That's pretty basic. But needs to be said.)
-  Make your readers worry. Readers savor the struggle, it makes them keep turning the pages.
-  Jot down your ideas whenever they happen, wherever you are. You will forget them if you don't.
-  Outline. Plan your journey. It will keep you focused.
-  Don't look back. Finish the complete first draft before you go back and edit. (I have a hard time with this one.)
-  Let it marinate. Step away from the project before doing the final read through.
-  Keep the action going. If you have trouble, close your eyes and play your scene out as if it were a movie. Then write what you see.
-  Get dramatic. Create empathy. Make the reader care
-  Flaw your hero.
-  Your villian can't be all bad. Give them backstory. Humanize them.

I'm sure I'll have a bunch more suggestions to share after I finish the book. Look for them in the next week or so. Or better yet, pick up a copy of this book. There are 101 lessons every writer needs to know. (His words not mine.) And he spends a page or two on each.
Happy writing!


  1. I like the advice you posted. You are right that it needs to be said to "write what you read". How often do we seem tempted to follow the new trend in publishing when it might not be our forte at all. If you would read it, then you can write it. The book sounds like good advice.

  2. Your blog looks great. I totally agree with lots of those rules. The first one is so important when you're slogging through the middle.

    These are my two favorites. "The more you make it appear that there is no possible way to settle these issues, the better your plot will be."

    And from Henry James "We work in the dark--we do what we can--we give what we have. Our doubt is our passion, and our passion is our task. The rest is tha madness of art."

    Keep on, Wendy. It's the only way.