Thursday, April 22, 2010

Guardian's Ten Tips for Writing Fiction

The Guardian (UK) asked a selection of writers to provide ten tips for writing fiction (Feb 2010). As one might expect, given that the responses involved a group of disparate writers, the tips ranged from the irreverent to the useful, the pissy to the pretentious. Nonetheless, they can be interesting to peruse.

Roddy Doyle, for example, offers rule #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."

PD James suggests:

"Read widely and with discrimination. Bad writing is contagious."

There is a part II as well, with responses from Hilary Mantel (Wolf Hall) ("Write a book you'd like to read. If you wouldn't read it, why would anybody else?"), the ubiquitous Joyce Carol Oates, Will Self ("Always carry a notebook. And I mean always.") and others.

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