Take counsel from established authors Every author has his/her style and each style is created through peculiar variables as the writer deems fit. Notwithstanding the distinction in approach however, writing has some fundamental rules that must be obeyed. The article below brings to light the advises given by different writers though they differ but with the common aim of creating a good piece in the end. Diana Athill 1 Read it aloud to yourself because that's the only way to be sure the rhythms of the sentences are OK (prose rhythms are too complex and subtle to be thought out – they can be got right only by ear). 2 Cut (perhaps that should be CUT): only by having no inessential words can every essential word be made to count. 3 You don't always have to go so far as to murder your darlings – those turns of phrase or images of which you felt extra proud when they appeared on the page – but go back and look at them with a very beady eye. Almost always it turns out that they'd be better dead. (Not every little twinge of satisfaction is suspect – it's the ones which amount to a sort of smug glee you must watch out for.) Margaret Atwood 1 Do not place a photograph of your favourite author on your desk, especially if the author is one of the famous ones who committed suicide. 2 Do be kind to yourself. Fill pages as quickly as possible; double space, or write on every second line. Regard every new page as a small triumph – 3 Until you get to Page 50. Then calm down, and start worrying about the quality. Do feel anxiety – it's the job. 4 Do give the work a name as quickly as possible. Own it, and see it. Dickens knew Bleak House was going to be called Bleak House before he started writing it. The rest must have been easy. 5 Do restrict your browsing to a few websites a day. Don't go near the online bookies – unless it's research. 6 Do keep a thesaurus, but in the shed at the back of the garden or behind the fridge, somewhere that demands travel or effort. Chances are the words that come into your head will do fine, eg "horse", "ran", "said". 7 Do, occasionally, give in to temptation. Wash the kitchen floor, hang out the washing. It's research. 8 Do change your mind. Good ideas are often murdered by better ones. I was working on a novel about a band called the Partitions. Then I decided to call them the Commitments. 9 Do not search amazon.co.uk for the book you haven't written yet. 10 Do spend a few minutes a day working on the cover biog – "He divides his time between Kabul and Tierra del Fuego." But then get back to work. To be Continued......... Written by: Azeez Sanusi
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