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Tod Goldberg Archive

The New Rules

September 21st, 2007
by Tod Goldberg

LA QUINTA, CA-

Chimp

Every fall, I reassess the rules I have for the writing workshops I teach. A few stay constant: no use of the word theme, no air quotes, no use of the word motif, no use of the word vis-a-vis unless you’re a citizen of France, no use of the sentence “but that’s how it really happened!” unless you’re explaining why the threesome involving you and Clinton & Stacy from What Not to Wear is physically (and psychically) accurate, no crying, no saying “your short story would make a great novel/movie/pop up book/Choose Your Own Adventure/Cinemax After Dark series,” no use of the terms “POD is the future” and “but John Grisham self-published his first novel,” and, finally, no adverbs in dialog tags.

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