it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

Seven characters walk into a room. Three come out.

Some interesting ontopic going on on the OWW mailing list on Things We've Learned About Writing Well, and Hannah has brought up the old bugaboo: Doing Things Right.

To clarify for y'all reading along at home, Doing Thing Right is Charlie Finlay's term for what sells a story. In other words, it's not a matter of not screwing up. Any halfway competent individual can not screw up a story, with sufficient practice. That gets you the old BFoD (Blue Form of Death) from RoF with "Didn't Stand Out," underlined.

A lot.

What sells a story is grabbing the editor by the nose and making yourself irresistible. It's a matter of taking your strengths and making them stronger, of polishing every word to the best of your ability, of tightening the story until it squeaks--and, whatever your flaws (and *all writers have flaws*) showcasing your strengths.


Okay, so what are my strengths? Characterization, I think. Emotional contact with the story. I'm working up to a nice grasp of sentence-level writing, too.

What I could do better? More interesting stories more interestingly told. Still. Always. Structure, I think. The Right Detail.

I'm not sure what elseI still need to learn, but I'm certain everything I do now, I could do better.

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