Saturday, April 5, 2008

Random Thoughts Over a PB&J

Okay, I just leafed through a great book on editing, and now I'm pondering writing advice that's been making the circuits for years. Consider these few:

After finishing a draft, put the manuscript in a drawer for a few weeks. I put my clothes in a drawer, maybe some thumbtacks and paper clips, but never a manuscript. Maybe I close the computer file, or if I've printed it, stick it in an expandable file folder. I don't know, but a drawer? How about a shelf? Maybe I'm just weird.

Show don't tell. Great advice, but so ambiguous. Maybe it should say, "Show some, tell some, show some more, tell the unimportant stuff, show the important stuff--all in moderation."

Beginning writers shouldn't use the first person point of view. It's not gasoline powered. It's not multi-bladed. It can't maim or kill. If first person is the right point of view, then it is.

Literary novels are much tougher to sell than commercial novels. Aren't all novels literary? Aren't all novels published commercial? I'll concede on one point, though. ALL novels are hard to sell right now. My agent says more people write them than buy them.


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