19 Apr

Mobilizing the Troops

Posted in Book Reviews, Writing Exercises

I recently added a new book to my writing bookshelf: The Art of War for Writers by James Scott Bell.  This is not a book to be read in one sitting, but rather, a book I plan dip into now and again, when I need a swift kick in the pants.  This week’s kicks are:

Recon Protocol #07:  Whining will not help you win the battle for publication.

All I can say is YES!  I am sooooo tired of hearing about how hard publishing is and how miserable it makes some writers.  I hereby vow not to whine for the duration of my thesis.  Heck, let’s make it the duration of this entire draft.  Because yes, becoming a published writer is hard and sometimes painful, but so are all worthy careers.  Like being a secret agent or a brain surgeon.

Recon Protocol #03:  Know the difference between a hero and a fool.

You know the phrase “don’t be a hero”?  In short, a hero is someone who does heroic things without really setting out to do them in the first place, while a fool is one who thinks he’s already a hero so he just sits back and expects all the laud and admiration to come to him.  We all know writers who are fools and writers who are heroes.  The trick is both to be a hero yourself and also try to refrain from smacking the fools upside the head.

This is just a small sampling of the pearls of wisdom (pearls I tell you!) that are in this little book.  And as for the writing-as-war metaphor, what can I say?  As someone who treats most endeavors of her life with military precision, I was right at home with this book.  All I know is, if it weren’t for my problems with authority figures, I’d make a great war general.

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