Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Learn the Craft: The Lukeman Way

You hate rejections, aren’t you? Every writer hates that unavoidable monster but some learn to live with it and some perish under the stress. So, would not you like to conquer the monster? I know you do, and this requires mastery of crafts on writing. 

Publication has become a commercial activity and an investment. Investment means optimism a commitment for good return. Obviously, a publisher would not invest on any manuscript without the craft and thus the rejection arises. 

Further, in the industry of book publication and writing no one is ready to teach you walking along the rough terrain. You will have to learn the craft by carefully observing the executions in the creations of other writers. So read as much as possible. 

Noah Lukeman says inspirations can not be taught but the craft can be taught and his effort in this regard is laudable. This year I read ‘On writing’ By Stephen King. It is a great book on the craft. The second book that I finished yesterday is The First Five Pages: A writer’s guide to Staying out of the Rejection Pile by Noah Lukeman and I must say it’s a great book like the former one. 

Noah Lukeman is a literary agent and he is in the business for many years; so he is supposed to know the craft from the close angle like a sailor closely reading the direction of the wind. And he has touched every aspect of the craft of writing in his book. Newbie writers read this book and reform your writing. 

This is kind teaching with a plethora of examples to drive home the point. To be published is a different thing and to write is again different thing though the later culminates with the former and both are closely related. First master the crafts and give words to your inspirations and then set the goal for publication. 

Good books are but manifestation of craft and I am sure you would like to write such a book. It opens my eyes and exposed my flaws in a great way. With the enlightening gained from this book, I’m sure I can do justice to my themes and thoughts. 

The book is divided into three parts under the heading of Preliminary Problems, Dialogue and the Bigger Picture. He talks on the Style, Comparison, Showing versus Telling, Point of View and Characterisations. He dwells on Hooks, Subtlety, Tone, Setting, Focus, Pacing and Progression. What more you want, it has everything a newbie writer needs other than inspiration. Does not he say, no one can teach the art of inspiration? The inspiration, words, beauty, presentation is up to you. This is a treasure on craft of writing and a must read for those writers who cherish a goal of publication. 

Rejection is a part and you should adapt to it because there is not a single writer without the experience of the slap of rejection. A mountaineer braces the blizzard, the rough terrain, tough condition and then unfurls the flag of his country on the top of a peak. And to reach to the acme is but a result of continuous practice and unwavering attempt. The path to publication is like the tip of a peak and no conveniences are there to reach but the rocky terrain. 

Stick to your goal, learn day by day and on a fine morning, the rainbow will be there on the clear sky. I recommend this book to all newbie writers because this is for you from a writer of calibre, from a good teacher. 

Good luck to all newbie writers. 


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