Rules for writing fiction  FEB 23 2010

The Guardian asked a bunch of writers to share their tips for writing fiction. The responses appear in two parts. Elmore Leonard:

Never use an adverb to modify the verb "said"... he admonished gravely. To use an adverb this way (or almost any way) is a mortal sin. The writer is now exposing himself in earnest, using a word that distracts and can interrupt the rhythm of the exchange. I have a character in one of my books tell how she used to write historical romances "full of rape and adverbs".

Here's Philip Pullman's response in full:

My main rule is to say no to things like this, which tempt me away from my proper work.

(via mr)

Read more posts on kottke.org about:
how to   lists   writing

kottke.org

Front page
About + contact
Site archives

Subscribe

Follow kottke.org on Twitter

Follow kottke.org on Tumblr

Like kottke.org on Facebook

Subscribe to the RSS feed

Advertisement

Ads by The Deck

Support kottke.org shop at Amazon

And more at Amazon.com

Looking for work?

More at We Work Remotely

Kottke @ Quarterly

Subscribe to Quarterly and get a real-life mailing from Jason every three months.

 

Enginehosting

Hosting provided EngineHosting