Found a cool site today: suspense writer Brandilyn Collins’ blog. The links on the left show you that she has a lot of advice for writers on subjects dealing with the craft of writing (unlike this blog, which focuses more on the business side) such as point of view, resolutions, subplots, twists, etc.
The post that led me to her blog was one on her opinion of writing “rules.” Now, I know that there are no true “rules” in writing, which is one of the more frustrating points of trying to teach it. (Remember Adaptation: Two screenwriter brothers are bickering, and one brother urges the other not to attend any instructional seminars where teachers claim to know all the rules of screenwriting – because there aren’t any. The second brother replies: “Not rules, Charles. Principles. A rule says, ‘You must do it this way.’ A principle says ‘This way works, and has worked since the begining of time.'”
That said, she started this series(?) with four darn good
rules principles. Follow them always – and see her blog for more good craft-related instructions.
1. One POV per scene
2. Use adverbs sparingly (pun intended)
3. Avoid speaker attributes (he said, etc.) whenever possible
4. Avoid “to be” verbs in narrative