Recently I was reading through one of the many writing blogs I subscribe to and I came across a list of do’s and don’ts for writers. Some of the advice came from editors, some from agents, and some from famous, bestselling authors. One of the “rules” said (and I’m paraphrasing): “Any time two characters are sitting around talking about another character the scene is dead.”
If you’re a Gen X, Gen Y, or even one of the Baby Boomers, you grew up surrounded by traditional advertising. And chances are, you can’t stand it. That’s because traditional advertisers use a very simple formula that most artists find to be a huge turn off. They push one agenda (buy our product) and try to blanket the biggest population they can with it using the power of persuasion.
When writers and artists talk about how they hate marketing and advertising, they’re usually talking about this very method. It feels smarmy, insincere, and pushy. It’s the thing that drives writers and artists away from things instead of toward.
Every writer has the voice of their inner critic somewhere inside their head. It might be a judgmental parent, or a toxic friend, or even someone from a long-ago writing group who made one hurtful comment about your story that stuck with you forever.
We all know the inner critic when that voice shows up.
Some writers call it a burst of inspiration. Some writers call it “being in the zone.” It’s that magical shift that happens when your characters start speaking and acting with their own free will. That point of no return when they run off on their own wild ride and you really have no choice but to follow along.