During our 4th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo, I was scheduled to present a session on my “15 Pearls” of Literature on Marketing, Blogging, Community, and Support. As it has worked out in the past (but won’t be the case anymore), I wasn’t able to get this session up in time but did get it done eventually – just not published. Those who registered for that session will be getting 3 new sessions FREE during our upcoming 2020 WC&BE!
This session on my “PEARLS…” will be shared here for all our members, in hopes that it will help in our quest to become more successful and better at marketing our work as we make connections that will benefit us professionally as well as personally. These will be posted under our posting schedule of Mondays & Thursdays each week, in separate parts.
Welcome to Part 6!
ARE YOU PLAYING BY THE RULES OF PUBLISHING?
So, how did you fare in English 101? Did you get that evasive “A” that every overachiever chases or did you get that devilish “D” that scares most of us horribly? Well, fortunately, I am a self-proclaimed English major so we know what I was after. I love English – I love words, and the dictionary is a book that I grew up reading as if it was my favorite novel. That being said, there is that part of English where (in my old age) I sometimes get stuck.
I admit to being a little too friendly with commas. I love commas! That’s obvious in my over-use of them sometimes. (Not very often, but, I willfully admit to having my moments). Now, in defense of my use of commas, they keep us from running red lights, bumping head-first into each other, and, they tend to save lives – reading lives, that is, as they give us a chance to pause and breathe during those stories written by long-winded writers. I won’t call your names, you know who you are.
When I ask are you playing by the rules of publishing, I’m referring to more than just your punctuation usage, though; the rules of publishing go far beyond that. I mean, there are unwritten laws that, if broken, could send you spiraling straight into writers’ hell. (Yes, that’s a real place because I READ it somewhere.)
Do you write in 1st, 2nd or 3rd person consistently through-out one story, or, do you mix it up? Do you like to NOT use that comma in a salutation, such as “Hi, Harry?” You know, there are people who are sticklers for things like that.
But, there are those of us who go too far in breaking the rules of publishing and if you don’t know who you are, I’m pointing at you. When you make huge mistakes and then say, “I did that intentionally,” or, “I like the way that looks,” you might be in trouble; not with the industry, but you’re making trouble for yourself. Let’s face it, some of those rules we can get away with breaking, but, others are a no-no and a definite book-kill.
Take the time to learn that which is most important in this industry, and sometimes what’s most important isn’t written in a manual – it’s listening to others and taking their good advice without defending your broken rules. Trust me, if those broken rules don’t bring you down, this industry surely will!
What rules do you tend to break in your writing?
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