How to write better

There are no rules for the blog but we can distil some general principles:

The best rules can’t be stated, but you can learn them by reading excellent writing. Develop an ear. If you know what works, you’ll start to emulate it. Conversely, it’s good to study truly horrendous language, stuff that makes you embarrassed for those responsible. You’ll find yourself mortally afraid of—and automatically avoiding—the same mistakes in your own writing. Hemingway said, “The most essential gift for a good writer is a built–in shock–proof shit-detector.” (They’re cheap if you haven’t already got one.) This is especially important for web writers, most of whom are publishing without the benefit of editors…

Have a thick skin. If your site gets singled out for attack by some malicious web devil, relax. You’ve gone public and you have to expect both rational and irrational criticism. Listen, people rag on Shakespeare all the time. If you’re a genuine talent, there’ll be plenty of people complimenting your efforts. If someone has a bona fide gripe with something you’ve produced, pay attention—it’s worth considering. If someone has a petty gripe or simply gets nasty, let it go. Get back to producing your site. If novelists spent their time responding to negative reviews, we’d be fresh out of novels.

These are some sensible resources and I do hope you find them useful!

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