Here are ten rules for writing. These are not THE rules. Just bits of advice that you may find useful when writing your folio piece.
In descending order:
10. ‘Write a draft. Then let it rest.’ – Stephen King
Try to leave a piece of writing for at least 24 hours before looking at it again and starting to make corrections.
9. ‘Read a lot.’ – Stephen King
Reading will give you ideas, broaden your horizons and deepen your knowledge.
8. ‘Never use a long word when a short word will do.’ – George Orwell
Controversial, but try to make your writing flow. Don’t cram it with fancy words just for the sake of it.
7. ‘Never use the passive voice when you can use the active voice’ – George Orwell
The difference is ‘a man was seen’ (passive) and ‘we saw a man’ (active).
6. ‘Know and understand your audience’ – Pierre Berton
Ask your teacher what your ‘audience’ – the exam marker – is looking for.
5. ‘Recycle and read the good stuff before you write.’ – Pierre Berton
Before you start writing, read some writing that you like.
4. ‘Honour the miraculousness of the ordinary’ – Andrew Morton
Everyday life has details that need to be written about and can inspire.
3. ‘Good copy = draft minus 10%’ – Stephen King
You still have to work to improve what you think is good.
2. ‘Look at every word in a sentence and decide if they are really needed. If not, kill them. Be ruthless.’ – Bob Cooper
Make sure every word has a purpose. Don’t let the writing become ‘flabby’ with words.
1. ‘Keep going’ – Joyce Carol Oates
Don’t give-up even when you’re stuck.
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