Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Right Way to Write

It's time again* for me to give you the secret I've been holding onto all these years. 

Ready for it?

Are you sure?

I don't want to just give it to you if you aren't absolutely, positively ready for this.

Because it could change your life forever.


Okay, so you're ready for it.



Here it is...

The right way to write is





Yeah, you can throw shit at me now, if it makes you feel better, but I'm serious.  There is no 'right way to write' that works for everyone.

Some people start out with pen and paper.  Some people start out with an outline.  Some people plot the whole way through.  Some people sit down at a keyboard and type until something coherent comes out.  Some of the last people have an idea of what they're writing, some of them are totally flying by the seat of their pants.  (Hence the name 'pantser'.)  Which one of those ways is right?  All of them - for the writer using each of them.  There is no wrong way to write either.

Okay, scratch that last bit.  There might in fact be a wrong way to write.  If you have no concept of how your language works and the basics of its grammar, you're probably not writing 'wrong' per se, but you'll hate yourself during editing.  Or whoever you pay to edit for you will probably create a voodoo doll in your likeness so they can stick pins in it whenever you totally slaughter the language.  (I sometimes suspect my editor has such a likeness of me and that's where my aches come from.  LOL)

What I really suggest for anyone who may be looking for the answer to "What's the right way to write?"  Find a way and try it.  If you think it sucks, or the work you produce sucks, try another way.  Keep trying them until you find one that doesn't suck for you.  And if, sometime down the road, that one starts to suck (as they sometimes do), switch to another method.  Whatever gets the words onto the page and keeps those pages piling up until you reach those magical two words: THE END.

The only one piece of advice any burgeoning writer needs is this: "Sit your ass down and write."  However you get those words on paper, get them on paper.  Everything else is moot until you have words.  Everything. Else.

Oh, and "Give yourself permission to suck", so your internal editor doesn't kill your little book zygotes before they get a chance to hatch.

That's all.  Any questions?

 * I've said this before, but it bears repeating every couple years as new writers come around looking for this advice. 

1 comment:

  1. Even those of us who aren't new need the occasional reminder. :)

    Time to format. Revisions, edits, copyedits, proofreading, and out loud reading for those last-minute tweaks all done. Format. Upload. Release Tuesday. Too bad I can't just collapse. Too many more new words to write--any way I can! LOLOL