Thursday – April 22, 2010
I arrived at the Writers’ Institute in Madison, Wisconsin a day early to take photographs and get my bearings. A college town, it’s instantly clear I missed the memo about must-be-seen-in accessories. I’m not decked out in earbuds, one dangling fashionably down the front of my shirt while holding a razor-thin cell phone to my other ear; or stylishly in front of my chest, index finger sliding gracefully across the glass face several times, brows furrowed, appearing to search intently for something.
Friday – April 23, 2010
Literary Agent Katharine Sands said to the audience of writers, “Writers … in the end, you’re opening a restaurant and your job is to fill seats with people and get them to try your signature dish.”
Saturday – April 24, 2010
In regards to getting a fresh pair of eyes to read your manuscript, author John DeDakis said, “There comes a time when you’ve done all the damage you can do, and now it’s someone else’s turn.”
Sunday – April 25, 2010
Author and teacher, Laurel Yourke, talked about “the new math,” meaning—Whatever doesn’t add, subtracts.
I share this feeling, especially as it relates to breaking the rules of writing. Be cautious of advice that starts with “never.” Absolute rules don’t always apply. If keeping a rule subtracts from the story, break it! An example that’s just begging to be broken is “Write what you know.” I don’t agree—at all. That’s what imaginations are for. If we think of rules as guidelines, we’re more apt to bend, stretch, and break them when it’s best for the story.Are you a rule breaker? Click To Tweet