by Calista Taylor
I'll admit, I have a running list of rules in my head constantly muttering and nagging at me when I write. Show, don't tell. Don't use "that". No head hopping pov's. Avoid dialog tags. The list goes on and on. However, this wasn't always the case.
When I first started writing, the only thing in my head were my characters' voices. I stuck to the rules of grammar, but other than that, I wrote with complete abandon, totally unaware of all the writing rules I was breaking and would mark my work as that of a young writer.
Needless to say, looking back at those first attempts at writing is pretty scary. I was cutting my teeth on those first attempts. And yet ... looking at my first completed manuscript (there were plenty of false starts), there's something about the voice and how the story's told that works. And it works in part because the rules didn't come into play.
Was the writing better back then? No. But I can say that it's made me realize something important. I know the rules. And now that I do, I can perfect breaking them.
Do you always follow the rules? Have you always ignored them? Or did you start only once you mastered them?
Calista Taylor is the author of two romance series, and also works as a cover artist.