Thursday, August 15, 2013

Ignoring the Sacred Rules of Writing

There are several things we learn in English as we grow up in school that  follow us into adulthood. There are things like never begin a sentence with the word but or and. Also, try not to over use the word and. All these are still very common sins we make, but we know we are not supposed to.
 If you’ve ever taken a writing course or workshop they encourage you to expand your vocabulary. Using words like frenetic, intoned, and queried if these are not usual words in you’re writing style throughout the book then you make it sound as if you hit the thesaurus to make you and your book sound smarter (which you probably did). So, keeping words that are common to your writing style and characters personality is probably essential to the style.
Try not to begin your story with an alarm clock going off, or end the book with something like a large explosion. If you’re wanting to build suspense for the next book there are better ways of doing this than ending the book with a suicide note.

I am also about to tell you to break the most cardinal rule of writing and they will probably shut down our blog. Don’t write what you know. The stigma that you must write about what you know and what has happened to you held me back for years as all my writing teachers told this mantra. I doubt Stephanie Meyers knew about vampires since Twilight came to here in a dream. Alternatively, Cassandra Clare knew about demons and angels growing up.

Our experiences help us to form our characters since they are such a large part of us in our books. This does not mean however that we are the book, because many people read to escape and to enjoy different experiences that they would never otherwise have in life. So, expand what you know, take experiences from your life, and let your imagination take you to the very limits that you can push. Then read your draft and push the limits some more, J.R. Tolken was stuck in the fox holes of World Word I and this is when he began writing the Hobbit and his whole world of Lord of the Rings. So do not allow yourself to be limited by sticking to just your everyday experiences but rather use them to push your book further. Your imagination is the limit.

-Elsha Fornefeld

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