Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing.
— Salvador Dali
And so, by giving myself permission to fail, I was able to begin.
— James Patrick Kelly
And the now famous The only 12.5 writing rules you'll ever need:
1. If you write every day, you'll get better at writing every day.
2. If it's boring to you, it's boring to your reader.
3. Get a writing routine, and stick with it.
4. Poetry does NOT have to rhyme.
5. Resist stereotypes, in real life and in your writing.
6. Writers read. Writers read a lot. Writers read all the time.
7. Make lists of your favorite words and books and places and things.
8. There doesn't always have to be a moral to the story.
9. Always bring your notebook. Always bring a spare pen.
10. Go for walks. Dance. Pull weeks. Do the dishes. Write about it.
11. Don't settle on just one style. Try something new!
12. Learn to tell both sides of the story.
12 1/2. Stop looking at this list. WRITE SOMETHING!
I've always thought that in writing and reading fiction it's more about the journey than the destination.
And whatever you do, please never go for one of Polti's 36 Dramatic Situations, let your story develop on it's own.