There are no rules

Eons ago, I attended a writers conference at my college. During the Q&A panel, some of the audience questions, even then, struck my newbie writer self as a little … nitpicky. Where do you write? Do you use a computer? What time of day? What do you recommend? That sort of thing. I don’t even remember the answers.

I thought then, and still think now, that it’s possible to worry too much about the process and not enough about the result. Using the same kind of laptop as Mr. Famous Writer Person doesn’t mean you’ll write as well as he does. Getting up at 4 a.m. to write just like Ms. Bestseller Person doesn’t guarantee you’ll have your own bestseller. There’s no one way to write a novel, and there’s more than one right answer. So I don’t get too concerned about the process.

This is why I just started playing around with a new novel, without an outline of any sort, using paper and not the laptop.

It might work out. It might not. It might take longer than using an outline and a keyboard. It might not. I don’t know yet. I do know I like this main character I’ve got and I hope to do her story justice.

But there are no guarantees in life. No perfect writing desks and no lucky pens. I’ll just have to keep going and see where I end up.

I like knowing there are no rules. All you have to do is write a good story. How you got there is up to you.

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