Karen Clark, a literary friend, said I could share this list with attribution. Karen, consider yourself attributed. :)
Authors, take heed:
- DO use words. A novel that consists entirely of punctuation marks, numbers and spaces isn't going to be read. That kind of experimentation should be left until you're an established writer.
- DO put those words into some kind of order. This is often overlooked by the beginner.
- DO have an idea before you start writing. I get my ideas from a small village in Bhutan. They're handcrafted and quite expensive, but well worth it. Cheaper ideas can be found on the internet or even, if you're desperate, broke and don't have any ambitions to sell a single copy of your book, from your own head.
- Characters can be quite useful. DO try to include one.
- DO NOT use passive sentences. You can tell a passive sentence by the inclusion of the word 'was'. Just get rid of that word, or replace it with something else and you'll be fine.
- SHOW DON'T TELL. This can get quite involved and time consuming, as it means visiting each of your readers in person. DO rehearse your charades before you turn up and make sure you bring a bottle of wine.
- DO NOT use adjectives or adverbs. This can make for some _____ _____ writing.
- DO use lots of graphic sex. Sex sells. Give your main character a new and exciting sexual partner at least once every page. Use the word 'thrust' a lot.
- DO NOT overdo the sex. Nothing turns a reader off like a promiscuous main character who either thrusts, or is thrust at a lot.
- DO put spaces between the words. Leaving out the spaces is a rookie mistake and one that is easily fixed by a professional and overpaid editor.
Thank you, Karen.