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A condensed guide like this one works well for motivated writers who want to focus more on their own writing than reading about how to write. Avoids excessive examples and endless activities. Clear, concise, and direct. A poor person’s MFA.

Helps you avoid amateurish errors (professional errors are often hailed as “groundbreaking”). Gives you a strong foundation to build on and set you forth on a lifetime of exquisite misery -- for there is no misery as grand as the struggling artist, poet, writer. Mastering literary tricks and infusing passion into your work requires you to sell your soul to the devil and endure a lifetime of pain, which is of course hyperbole. (It does, however, require some initial talent and lots of hard work.)

There are no “rules.” However, you should learn the rules before you break them. You should master accepted “norms” before deviating from them.

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