On writing & On loving Neil Gaiman

Thank you Gotham Writers’ Workshop, for your email blast this a.m. Neil Gaiman, literary “rock star,” writer of “Coraline,” “The Graveyard Book” and “The Sandman” series. I have one his books on my proverbial “nightstand,” called “Angels & Visitations: A Miscellany,” that has stayed in my heart for decades. From same, The Song of The Audience:

“Let us call now for the makers of strong images,
Let them come to us now carrying their quills and sharp razors
Let them gash their arms for ink and let them limn.”

His tips on writing, below. Thought they’d be a good start for this morning. I think the last one is my favorite one….

Neil Gaiman On Writing…

8 Good Writing Practices
1) Write.
2) Put one word after another. Find the right word, put it down.
3) Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.
4) Put it aside. Read it pretending you’ve never read it before. Show it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.
5) Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.
6) Fix it. Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to write the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.
7) Laugh at your own jokes.
8) The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.

(From an article in The Guardian, thank you!)

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