I) Thou shalt finish the ENTIRE draft and let it be the story YOU want to read.
II) Thou shalt silence thine internal editor while working on the first draft lest you spend days polishing the first page and give up on the whole project.
III) Thou shalt edit it BEFORE letting people read it.
IV) If thou are not a grammar nazi, though shalt find one and befriend them (They usually like cookies.)
V) Thou shalt, in the editing process, strive to remove that which ultimately the reader will skip reading anyway.
VI) Thou shall only focus on thine own work at the moment neither obsessing on whether or not the work is original nor declaring it to be the first in a series when an agent hasn’t even glimpsed the manuscript.
VII) Though shalt not forget writing is hard work and a discipline. (Ask any of our breathren who do it for a living.)
VIII) Thou shalt have a naysmith. One who is qualified to tell you what needs to be changed even when you think they are dead wrong.
IX) Thou shalt listen to thy naysmith.
X) Thou shalt remember not to take life so seriously – it isn’t like any of us are going to get out of this alive anyway. (The happy times and the heart breaks all have a place in your work.)
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