You don’t know diddly-squat about writing


Writers Corner

Rusty Strait | Senior Reporter

Welcome to the club. I never knew a writer who just sat down at a desk and a typewriter (or computer today) and wrote a perfect thousand words. We all learn the hard way: “Write one word, one sentence, one paragraph at a time. School will not teach you to write. Writing is a craft, and education only provides the tools to help you manage your craft. Writers are like carpenters; they need tools. Of course, there are other ways to use those tools. Travel, relationships, sights, life experiences—those are the products upon which they use their tools. Why do some people latch onto the routine better than others? Easy. Not all artists are so adept. Some have to struggle with their tools. Others seem to have brought them from the womb.

Where do ideas often come from? Most, I am told by other professionals, come from their dreams. I get a great many scenes or incidents from my dreams. Dreams are inspiring if you treat them right. In my writing career, I’ve received so many ideas from my dreams that it’s like I live an entirely different life in those sleeping thoughts. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and find that it takes half an hour or more before I come back to this life.

No matter what rules there are in writing, none fit every occasion. It’s okay to break the rules if you believe you have a better way of doing it. Ever heard an auto mechanic say, “I’ll have this fixed in a jiffy”? You may wonder how he does it with a piece of metal and a wire. That’s what is called being creative. Get the point?

I may have mentioned this in the past, but I’ll say it again, as stories are built the same way a house is. An idea, framework, and everything else. A story, at least a lasting story, will have a good foundation, structure, and walls to complete it. Maybe you don’t believe me. Go read Plato and Socrates, and you’ll quickly grasp what it means to be a writer. POPULAR WRITING COMPARED TO THE CLASSICS CAN BE COMPARED TO POP MUSIC AND OPERA. Classics versus popularity. They are so different and yet so much alike in structure. Anyway, go buy a comfortable blanket to cuddle up with while you pound the keys to next year’s best seller. What do I know? Just sayin’. [email protected]

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