The Writing Menu Matters
There are world renown chefs and there are unknown chefs who have world renown talent and passion, combined with the drive to create some of the best cuisine anyone has ever tasted. Fame and success do not go hand in hand. There are also people who make a decent living flipping burgers at the local diner, and still others who crank out fast food at McDonalds and Burger King. There is no shame in doing any of these jobs and we all do what we love to do, or what we want to do, or what we need to do to get by in the world. At the same time, nobody should ever confuse flipping burgers with having the talent, passion and drive to create food that is nothing short of fine art.
Writing is not all that much different than cooking. Like food, literary menus vary far and wide. There are different styles, different cultures, different genre’s, and each of them, to one degree or another, have different writing rules. The rules for writing a thirty thousand word YA novel by an author who cranks out ten books a year, and the rules for writing a hundred thousand plus word, deeply detailed, serious adult novel by an author who puts out one book every few years are likely as different as flipping burgers at McDonalds and creating roast duck at the Ritz Carlton. And of course, just as there is food to fit every taste, there is writing to fit the taste at every level between fast food burgers and roast duck.
The only hard-set rule that I know of that encompasses the entire writing world is this. Writers write. All the other rules determine the flavor, the style, and the quality of what we write. Make sure you know your menu before you decide which recipe to follow.
And when you as a writer share your rules for writing, be aware that your rules will not necessarily work for everyone else’s writing, any more then advice from a burger flipper at the McDonalds could give all that much advice to a 5 star chef, or perhaps visa versa.