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When I sit down to write I totally lose the story

From: Raymond E. Feist
Date: 17 February 1998

OK, here's the deal.

First of all, type "I" for I when you're writing. Why? Not because of the "u" flame stuff, but because you need to practice EVERY aspect of the writer's craft, so you don't need to think about mechanics.

I have a learning disability I had to overcome, but other than the problems fatigue and stress give me when I type (and my typing goes to HELL when my binocular dysfunction kicks in), I otherwise don't have to think about what my fingers are doing on the keyboard. I just think story and it comes out my fingers.

Now, for your problem. What makes you think that you can learn this in a hurry? "I totally lose the story?" Well, PRACTICE not losing the story when you sit down to type.

You wouldn't take a few piano lesions then get frustrated because you couldn't compose would you? Don't get frustrated because you're not a novelist after a few hours working on a scene.

Writing fiction is like any other skill: IT MUST BE PRACTICED.

It's like the old joke about how to carve an elephant out of a block of granite. First, get a block of granite, then chisel away everything that doesn't look like an elephant.

First, write stuff. Then cut away the junk that doesn't make your story work the way you want.

Tedium is a major component of learning to write.

Best, R.E.F.

FAQ answers attributed to Raymond E. Feist are copyright by Raymond E. Feist.
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