Gold star for you: now ‘kill your darlings.’

daisy5Steven James wrote a terrific essay about writing flaws; what resonated with me was the caution, when writing fiction, not to use literary devices.


I love me some alliteration but in a key sentence, Steven stopped me short:

“Believe it or not, you don’t want readers to admire your writing: You want them to be so engaged in the story itself that they don’t notice the way you use words to shape it.”

His advice is a compelling version of the old writing adage,  “kill your darlings.”  Is he right?  If so, the latest version of my story is in for a serious overhaul.

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