Monday, March 12, 2007

Writing Advice

The best writing advice I've ever heard actually comes from the world of golf and you can find it in the Little Red Book by Harvey Pennick. Here is this piece of advice,

If someone tells you to take an aspirin. You don't take the whole bottle.

I think the meaning of this is clear, but it is especially relevant to writers, so I'll explain it for you. If you read a piece of writing advice, use it in moderation. For example, you read some advice that says you should limit your descriptions because they bore the readers. Fine, limit your descriptions, but don't abandon them. Otherwise, you'll find yourself writing stories set in bland environments that lack atmosphere. This is just one example, but there are hundreds of pieces of writing advice that if taken to the extreme can do much more harm than good. Also, once you head down this path of heeding a certain piece of advice, then reclaiming what you've lost is very difficult.

Agree? Disagree? Anybody out there?

Didn't think so.

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