Don't make corrections at the sentence and word level if you still need to work on the focus, organization, and development of the whole paper, of sections, or of paragraphs. Set your text aside for a while 15 minutes, a day, a week between writing and proofing.
Take this gem, upon which I recently stumbled: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. Putting aside the problematic politics of this ok, dated statement: Semicolons do serve, you know, a purpose c. This advice, for example, might rob us of a writer like Georges Perec, who goes into such great detail in his Life: And yet it seems to posit a world in which we all process thought in the same way.
Perhaps Hare processes the world internally, thinks about what he wants to say before he says it, later articulating his ideas clearly and with confidence—but not everyone works like this.
I pinch them out of my prose.
The difference is that Barthelme is identifying a quality of himself that makes his own prose particular, while Vonnegut is assuming a pose of rightness.
Barthelme not only understands that his feeling toward semi-colons is personal, but, more importantly, he understands that the value of this preference—its value for him as a writer—lies precisely in the fact that it is personal, an element of himself expressed as an aspect of style, an element that distinguishes him from—not Vonnegut, apparently, but plenty of other writers.
When I was pregnant with my son and reading all those books about how best to give birth, how best to put my baby to sleep, or feed him, or name him—it was around that time I started to think more seriously about how crazy-making the barrage of writing advice really is.
I admit I read all those pregnancy books with at least some conviction and earnest attention—I had no idea what I was doing!
In fact the best advice I got came from a neighbor whose own children were grown and who stopped by one day—seeing me depressed and frazzled at the store—offering to hold the baby for an hour while I took a shower and dressed.
When she left, she handed him back and said, basically: No one knows how to do it.
For me, the only writing advice that stirs anything meaningful in my guts or brains—advice that opens me up rather than shutting me down—is advice that acknowledges the limits of what we can know about ourselves or our work, that acknowledges even revels in the unknowable, the void.
The very first novel I wrote was horrible, as so many first novels are. I put my novel in a box and hid it somewhere. At that time, I lived out in the middle of the country. In the dream, I was walking out of the house toward the barn, and this horse stuck its head out through the top of the barn door.
Ed, the talking horse.So, when a writer writes about writing, it’s worth taking note. Especially if you’re a budding man (or woman) of letters. What follows are 50 priceless nuggets of wisdom, 50 slices of self-reflection, 50 explanations as to why writers write.
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How to Become an Accomplished Young Author - Becoming an Accomplished Young AuthorThink of why you want to be an attheheels.com reading some attheheels.com sure that you understand the "basics" of your attheheels.com about grammar and attheheels.com out the basic event line for your book.
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Writing Tips and Advice. You can learn a lot about writing from other writers. Read what some of the greats said, and learn how to revise and edit like a pro.