1. If you want a writer to visit the Department of Motor Vehicles, give him a
2. An outline is a thrilling map of all the places your story will never go.
3. If you want your friends to stop confiding in you, tell them you’re working on a
4. Never tell someone at a party that you’re a novelist. Chances are, they won’t
know who you are or what you’ve written but they’ll have an opinion anyway.
5. Selling books these days is like selling bottled water next to a water fountain. No
one needs to buy what they can get for free.
6. How come no one wants to tell you what’s wrong with your manuscript but
everyone wants to tell you what’s wrong with your published book?
7. Treat your fictional characters as charitably as you would your significant other.
You can dump your significant other but those characters will sit around in print
for a long, long time.
8. When you start, you live to write. When you get successful, you write to live.
Never forget the first phase.
9. A story is like a car. A writer works the gas and brakes. An editor helps him
steer. But it’s readers who make the road.
10. Never put off until tomorrow what you can do an awful first draft on today.