Archive - August 16, 2010

1
Taking Criticism: Are You Man (or Woman) Enough To Be A Writer?
2
So You've Written A Book. Congratulations! Now Go Hire Yourself An Editor

Taking Criticism: Are You Man (or Woman) Enough To Be A Writer?

Years ago when I was an undergraduate in the Writers Institute at Saint Louis University I had a wonderful creative writing professor who taught me what publishing and the world of literature was all about. He told us then–and there were twenty-five of us would-be novelists in this freshman class–that what we write would be judged by him, not against the person in the next desk, but against the whole cannon of literature. “You want to write and be read?” he said. “Well this is your competition, these are the great writers of the world. They are the standards I use to evaluate your prose.” And then he pointed to a bookshelf of the greatest books in the world. Well, I never did very well against the Great Writers of Western Civilization, but occasionally he would nod approvingly over a sentence of mine, or the way I used a metaphor, and . . .

Read More

So You've Written A Book. Congratulations! Now Go Hire Yourself An Editor

When Faulkner finished A Fable ( his 17th book) he brought it to New York and to his editor Bennett Cerf at Random House. Cerf read the novel and put Faulkner in an office and told him to rewrite it. When Thomas Wolfe was writing his novels in his New York apartment, his famous editor, Maxwell Perkins, knocked on the door, came in, took the manuscript away from Wolfe and told him, “you’re done now, Tom” and went off and edited Wolfe’s pages into a publishable book. The reason for a publisher is the editing talent that they bring to a manuscript. These editing skills are not generally available to most self-published writers. Yes, a few RPCV writers have gone out of their way and hired editors, mostly for copy editing, not line editing, or editing for content. These are three different types of editing: 1) content; 2) line editing; 3) copy editing. It is rare that you . . .

Read More

Copyright © 2019. Peace Corps Worldwide.