Friday, July 14, 2006

Fortune Cookie Wisdom

Four basic premises of writing: clarity, brevity, simplicity and humanity

I got this wisdom from a fortune cookie last weekend. Sometimes it doesn't seem like those four elements go together, but as a writer, we strive to balance all of those things.

It's been a good writing week, not as good as I planned, but better than the last few weeks. I took a break today and went out to lunch with a friend of mine. Afterward, as we always seem to do, we ended up at Barnes & Noble. I didn't really need any books, but books are what bonded this friend and I. We both favor romance and most of the time our tastes run the same. But many times it does not and we spend time arguing about it in the romance aisle. And that is the beauty of the genre. What is junk to one person is awesome to another. I'm a good deal harder on authors than she is. Because she is seeing the story as a reader. The glitches in historical accuracy which send me into back-breaking spasms roll off her like water. Poor writing where there basic mistakes in mechanics that make me want to spit are below her radar. I'll point them out and she shrugs. She doesn't care as long as the characters and the writing are good.

Too often I think we writers are focused on the first three elements mentioned above, making every word count, proud of our mechanics and the beauty of the language without considering the humanity.

Lucky numbers: 5, 14, 34, 28, 6, 4

If the saying doesn't do you any good, maybe the lucky numbers that were printed below could help.

Mark you calendars!

One tool I find that helps jumpstart my writing is a Book in a Week. Melissa and I are going to host one in August and one in September over at Villa in Tuscany. We'll have more details to post, probably after the RWA conference, the conference I AM NOT GOING TO!!! Not that I'm disappointed or anything, sniff....