Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Poziga, Jun 2, 2014.
I found this picture on the internet... What do you think?
Is the title a joke?
I suspect the whole thing is.
I've seen this image before. It is very clever. There's actually one right here that includes even more rules.
Are these rules things I actually need to follow? Because, if so, shit. It was written as a joke but some of these make sense.
#13 for example. At least for me, I tend to overwrite...
I use 'and' a lot. Also, I have a few too many parenthetical statements.
I laughed out so many times while reading those tips and the version jared linked. So true for all of 'em
So many of them are so common sense for me that I can't help but feel like a jerk as I know some people don't know it's not proper to do some of those things. Mainly the parantheses one, I find it odd when I see someone use it in a piece of fiction. Is the author really breaking narrative and the fourth wall to tell me something? lol.
A note: To people wondering how hard these rules are, remember to take every "rule" on writing you find with a grain of salt and research it. You'll find probably more contradictions than any unified agreement.
I sometime use one word sentences.
"Pain. A headache. My head is throbbing and I open my eyes to look at the dashboard of the plane not even an inch from my eye. I pull my head up and the headache grows. My ears are ringing too. The windshield is cracked and buried in the ground. Rain drips through it."
Literally the first paragraph of my manuscript. I'm 90% sure I broke at least two rules in that paragraph alone.
Yeah, I'm not sure what this is supposed to be. Every item is not ridiculous, so it's not supposed to be completely humorous. Yet, some of the items are ridiculous, so it's not supposed to be taken seriously (as the title might indicate). Is it supposed to be humorous solely in its content (don't use quotations in this list that I use quotations in)? If so, the lack of "humorous unity" in the content is throwing it off for me.
Also, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, USE QUOTATIONS!
I wonder how many people missed the fact that this is a joke.
It's a joke, but can't some of them be right? Parenthesis in fiction are bad. There's one. Absolutes probably aren't great either. Contractions... well at least in first person, people think (or at least I do) in contractions. Unless I'm seriously hurting with word count, I won't expand the contraction. They go both ways.
#14 - Onomatopeia s best kept to real words.
I don't like absolute rules. So when people say to always avoid parentheses, I have to disagree. Parentheses, like everything else, can be used effectively even in fiction.
The only absolute in creative writing is that there are no absolutes.
#18 - One word sentence? Eliminate.
I have a few parenthesis in my manuscript but I intend to come back to them later and patch them into the writing itself. Even in thought narration, it feels odd. I only did it so I could move on and not get bogged down on that single line.
But yeah, there's no absolutes in fiction.
Um...guys? The joke is in the fact that the wording of each "rule" breaks the rule.
I agree with you here. Some rules can be quite restrictive when it comes to developing your style.
Except when it comes to grammar. If you break those rules, you have to know why, otherwise it's just a mistake.
Edit: oops I totally just wrote something out without even looking at the picture..... pretty funny
didn't any of you notice that?
it's simple... with the letters g, o, o, and d
the first rule should be:
learn the difference between the words 'good' and 'well'
Now I feel like I must break all these rules in a way that works.
"The moment you have to explain a joke, it ceases to be funny." - Henny Youngman.
Well, I think most people got the joke, but I think, like me, most people were wondering if the writer was serious about avoiding these and using the jokes as examples. Like, say number 10: One should never generalize. Maybe the writer was kind of poking us in the ribs saying, "See? I generalized and see how awful that was? That's why you don't do it." So when I first read it I was trying to decide if these things were seriously to be avoided. Decided no, and on second glance, I see the person writing it probably didn't believe so either.
The thread title reminds me of the movie 'Zoolander'!
This thread, and the graphic in the original post especially, does make an important point. Too often new writers take such rules as gospel. That's why we need to be careful when we give advice like "show, don't tell." I try to avoid mentioning any absolute rules when replying to posts by new writers because they might end up doing more harm than good.
Separate names with a comma.