Good writing excites me, and makes life worth living.
by Harold Pinter
Yes I have to write. I wish to write better; but can’t, won’t and don’t.
Ah to be well read and “well said.” If only my words can be wielded with flair like writers I admire. I am discouraged. Yet I still want to write. I must think and study.
- What rules are worth.
Brenda Ueland is right, “everyone is talented, original and has something to say,” but I wont neglect my housework for writing. Nor will I allow my creative urges to be “drummed out” by the many “unloving know-it-alls”: my teachers, critics, friends, family and curious spectators. Ueland taught that the only good teacher was an encouraging friend who “loves you, who thinks you are interesting or very important or wonderfully funny.” I have found this to be absolutely true.
- Laws of construction, plot and dialogue.
John van Druten said ” I cannot make you a playwright,” and what a pity. Well at least van Druten wrote, ” I can tell you only what I know and think, myself. There will be no rule that is not covered with the phrase ‘to suit my tastes.’ Those tastes may very well not be yours, as they have often not been those of other people. But they are all that I can write.” So in this spirit I collect as many tools to fashion my own writing.
So I will first acquaint myself with the available tools and then choose the appropriate ones for the task at hand. So I will heed good advice.
Truman Capote said:
Writing has laws of perspective of light and shade, just as painting or music does. If you are born knowing them, fine. If not, learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself.
T. S. Eliot agreed:
It is not wise to violate the rules, until you know how to observe them.
- My voice and tone.
- Principles of structure and plot.
- Formal and familiar styles.
- The rules of grammar and usage.
- Inspiration and perseverance.
Well this is where I will start!