Breaking the Rules: Write Like You Speak.

I wonder how many people really, passionately want to communicate their thoughts and ideas to the world through the written word, but never pick up a pen or open a fresh, new Word doc. What are they afraid of?

Sister Ethel and her Grammar Stick. Yeesh.

Sister Ethel and her Grammar Stick. Yeesh.

Enter the Rules of Grammar. Dunh, dunh, DUNH!

The Rules, often pounded into our tender young minds by fearsome forces (refer to photo) who had neither an ear for language nor the passion for it, have shut down and discouraged so many aspiring artists.

But there's an instant cure for this--a way to say a resounding, soul-clearing "Fuck off!" to the Rules, the people who made you learn them because they believed rules are more important than free expression, and anyone else who wants to "teach you to write."

Here's all you do: write the way you speak!

[Mentally insert heavenly choirs of angels here.]

That's it! So simple! Expressing yourself in writing is a basic, ancient human right. It should come as naturally to you as speaking. When you talk with friends, are you afraid to break The Rules of Grammar? Hell, no! You're just putting ideas out there, screwing around, riffing off each other. Exploring, adventuring. Having fun.

Aspiring writers, get over your Grammar Trauma! Put on your Big Girl/Big Boy Undies and just start writing without editing yourself in any way. See what comes out. People will completely dig your unique ideas expressed with authenticity, honesty, and vulnerability.

The main thing is that you start writing. As you relax about it and get under way, ask yourself, "Is this the way I would say it?" Try reading your stuff out loud to see if it sounds natural, like conversation.

My friends, to hell with The Rules! Free yourself and get out there. Tell Sister Ethel she can keep her gifts. :)