author of books for young readers + young adults

Right Write?

There are plenty of folks out there who’d like to sell you a Secret Recipe for how to best write and revise. Some of them are published authors. Some are teachers. Some are good ol' charlatans. Some of them say that, as a fledgling writer, you must follow a certain formula and that, heaven forbid, if you stray from such said formula you are either a) An Undisciplined Sloth or b) Not-A-Real-Writer.

Malarkey, I say.

I say that primarily because I’ve been watching The Roosevelts this week, and “malarkey” is the 1910-appropriate response.

Teddy says, "MALARKEY, FOOL."

There are a myriad of "right" approaches to any creative process. Take the field of, say, musical composition. Let’s look at the greats: Mozart, Beethoven, Hall, and Oates. Ahahaha. No, jk, jk, we’ll take Beethoven off the list.

Wolfie here, boy genius that he was, would sometimes compose on the spot. He was an improvisational maniac.

In later years, a deaf Beethoven used his extensive musical knowledge and imagination, as well as the use of sound vibrations, to compose masterpieces.

Rave on, Beetie. Rave on.

Franz Liszt, the Grand Poobah of narcissists, was the first pianist to popularize the side-view style of performance because he thought he had a hawt profile. Apparently the ladies agreed, because women would faint at his concerts. That has nothing to do with composition style, but seriously, was this guy a pill, or what?