Gail Carson Levine's 7 Rules For Writing

Gail Carson Levine’s 7 Rules For Writing


In this post, we share American young adult author, Gail Carson Levine’s seven rules for writing stories.

Gail Carson Levine is an American author of young adult books. She was born 17 September 1947.

According to Wikipedia it took a while for the author to have some success with her books: ‘…in 1987, she began writing, but over the next nine years, all of her manuscripts were rejected. During this time she took writing classes and joined writer’s groups. Reflecting on her experiences, Levine says, “Those years were some of my happiest. I was learning to write.”‘

Her first novel, Ella Enchanted, received a Newbery Honor. She is also the author of Writing Magic: Creating Stories that Fly and Writer to Writer: From Think to Ink. Her latest book is A Ceiling Made of Eggshells.

Levine’s books feature magic and magical creatures, love and marriage, and strong female leads. Common themes include courage, kindness, selflessness, and self-confidence.

This advice is taken from chapter one of her book, Writing Magic: Creating Stories that Fly.

Gail Carson Levine’s 7 Rules For Writing

  1. ‘The best way to write better is to write more.
  2. The best way to write better is to write more.
  3. The best way to write better is to write more.
  4. The best way to write more is to write whenever you have five minutes and wherever you find a chair and a pen and paper or your computer.
  5. Read! Most likely you don’t need this rule. If you enjoy writing, you probably enjoy reading. The payoff for this pleasure is that reading books shows you how to write them.
  6. Reread! There’s nothing wrong with reading a book you love over and over. When you do, the words get inside you, become part of you, in a way that words in a book you’ve read only once can’t.
  7. Save everything you write, even if you don’t like it, even if you hate it. Save it for a minimum of fifteen years. I’m serious. At that time, if you want to, you can throw it out, but even then don’t discard your writing lightly.’

Gail Carson Levine also has an oath she suggests authors say out loud:

‘I promise solemnly:

  1. to write as often and as much as I can,
  2. to respect my writing self, and
  3. to nurture the writing of others.

I accept these responsibilities and shall honour them always.’

The Last Word

We hope this article with its seven rules for writing from Gail Carson Levine helps you to write your stories.

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TIP: If you want help writing a book, buy The Novel Writing Exercises Workbook.

 by Amanda Patterson

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