Making a superficial scan of the thousands of bloggers, promoters, DIYers and wannabe gurus on the web, we find tons of tried-and-true wisdom about how to be a writer. Even how to make money at it. Some of that advice needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Some of it with a huge, horse-pasture-sized block of salt. Especially if we have illusions about making money at writing.
What Does Everyone Tell Us?
What we want to hear, of course: Continue reading “4 Bits of Bad Advice for Writers”
All right. This is not an essay from an expert telling everybody about better writing technique. This is a writer complaining about all the dratted self-styled experts who have nothing better to do than find arbitrary ways to complain about our work.
Case in Point.
I write, “Her eyes dropped to the floor.” And my smart-*ss editor comments, “I hope she picked them up afterwards.” Continue reading “Cast Your Eyes Over This and Other Writing Flubs?”
What if you produced an eBook, and one word on almost every page, chosen at random, pulsated gently. What if you produced a paperback, and one random word in every thousand was a different colour.
I can just hear you now. “What a stupid thing to do!” “Why would anybody in their right mind do that?” and, “Why are you throwing distractions at the readers?”
And my answer is, “You’re doing it all the time.”
Huh? Continue reading “Make Your Writing Invisible”
And why detectives need to be careful writing Detective Fiction, etcetera. Experts tend to fill their novels with esoteric information that gets in the way of the story, so choose your atmospheric/tech descriptions wisely.
Okay, Isaac Asimov had a PhD in Biochemistry. He was a genius. But I think it is safe to assume that you’re not. And if you are, you shouldn’t be listening to me anyway. Go away and create a brave new genre, and leave us plods in the dust trying to explain why you are so successful.
Asimov’s genius was in using his scientific background to make his Sci-Fi believable, but not letting it become the be-all and end-all of his work.
That is the bane of science fiction writers. So many of them think that they can create all sorts of verisimilitude by having wonderfully accurate science in their stories. And they are wrong. Because what the vast majority of people want is good stories. They couldn’t care less about the science. Readers want realistic characters, not realistic science.
Let me give you an example. Continue reading “Why Scientists Shouldn’t Write Science Fiction”