Three Pro Tips on Writing

#1: Author Joanna Russ died on April 29th. She wrote science fiction and literary criticism, and I have The Female Man waiting in my Goodreads queue. Another one of her books had the best book cover:

It's sad and funny 'cause it's true

#2: Zadie Smith has shared the shortest, most to to the point, list of ten rules for writers at the Guardian:

1 When still a child, make sure you read a lot of books. Spend more time doing this than anything else.

2 When an adult, try to read your own work as a stranger would read it, or even better, as an enemy would.

3 Don’t romanticise your “vocation”. You can either write good sentences or you can’t. There is no “writer’s lifestyle”. All that matters is what you leave on the page.

So far I have #1 down! Excellent. (Read the rest here.)

#3: The Rejectionist has a delightful (as usual) post on using female characters’ deaths as plot devices:

Racking up the (hot, slutty, dismembered) Lady Character body count to prove just how Depraved your serial killer is: NOT APPROPRIATE

The Lady Character randomly kills herself/is murdered solely to add Dramatic Interest to a Conflict between two Gentlemen Characters (aka the “Christopher Nolan”): NOT APPROPRIATE

I love that she named that last one. (Read the rest here.)

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4 thoughts on “Three Pro Tips on Writing

  1. Ooh – The Female Man was one of the first books I read in my first Gender Studies classes in college. Also, one of the few books I saved. I’ll be interested to hear what you think.

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