Thursday, January 24, 2008

James Scott Bell (Advice for Novelists, Part 4)

And we continue the series ...

"If you could say one thing to aspiring novelists, what would you say?"

Arnold Palmer said golf came down basically to this: hit it, find it,
then hit it again. Well, writing is sort of like that, too. Write it, edit it, then write it again. When you write, don't be hung up on making it perfect. Don't be bollixed up on writing techniques. The golfer who thinks of 22 different things as he swings always muffs it. Write hot, revise cool. When you edit your work, get feedback: from readers, from a group, or just by reading a writing book and seeing how the techniques apply to you. Then, with what you learn, write it again. Or start a new project. Each time you do this, you get a little better. Keep after it.

--James Scott Bell, author of the novels The Whole Truth, Try Dying, Breach of Promise, and many others, as well as the writing how-to book Plot & Structure.


Poor Golfer said...

i like the way you are writing ! This is something really awesome ... its really cool to see this kinds of posts ...

Fantastic .

Merrie Destefano said...

Page-turner of the month for me?

Plot & Structure.

Hmmmm. I wonder why? Could it be that it's fantastic and helpful and I'm just so glad to have this resource at EXACTLY the time I need it?

Thanks for being such a great teacher, on top of being such a great writer, Jim.

And C.J., thanks for the link over at Faith in Fiction. This is really a great blog.

C.J. Darlington said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, Merrie! You know what I'm really looking forward to? Jim's next writing book! It's called Revision and Self-Editing.

Merrie Destefano said...

Thanks for the hot tip! I've got to go get it. Immediately!