I’ve personally blogged on the release of “INK – Eight Rules To A Better Book” by R.S. Guthrie and when I learned of a chance to join in on the Orangeberry Book Tours event showcasing INK, I couldn’t pass up featuring it a second time. I believe in the book, I believe in the RULES. They’ve been referred to as The Eight Commandments of writing. I wish I had come up with that but the credit has to go to Scott Morgan, a tremendous writing coach in his own right, who penned the Foreward in the book. Reviews on Amazon and Barnes and Noble, comments on the numerous blogs featuring INK, tweets made on Twitter, messages posted on Facebook, from both novices AND seasoned authors are coming in exalting the Eight Rules and I am here to tell you also, that I have learned more from INK than from ALL the other books on the craft of writing I’ve read combined. Stephen King, Anne Lamott – Guthrie easily takes a rightful position beside them with INK. It’s not a book on how-to write but how to write better.
So, like I said, I’ve blogged myself on INK and given my perspective. With this blog tour, R.S. Guthrie himself makes a personal appearance and speaks on how and why he wrote it.
I hope you writers out there read this. I wrote this book for YOU. I don’t know any simpler way to say it. It’s tight and concise because I wanted it to be devoid of sentence after sentence of lecturing. The paperback, as you may read, is priced as low as it can go (margins made are lower than the digital edition)—why? Read on and I will tell you. <smiles salaciously>
When I first decided to write a book on writing (after blogging about the subject for a year and a half), the decision was not a difficult one. I had a vision of exactly what I wanted.
Strunk & White. Elements of Style.
It’s not that I believed myself capable of equaling their (arguable) classic work on grammar, style, and writing in general but rather I wanted to produce a book that was small in stature, large in OOMPH. A book one might keep next to the computer (or typewriter, for your sadomasochists). In fact, I priced the paperback as low as the distributor would allow (which means I make less on a physical paperback than a digital copy), all because I honestly believe, of all books, this is the one that deserves all the real highlight marks, dogears, and other signs of heavy usage over the years.
You see, over the decades I attended (and led) quite a number of writing workshops, attended courses, and handed out work to be critiqued (with the telltale grimace of someone who doesn’t want to hear what he or she knows they need to hear). But the gems I learned over those years. I had to share them. I needed to share them. I believe fervently that writers need to band together because, unlike other products, ours is continually in demand—far more demand than only a few select of us can provide. In other words:
There are enough readers for all talented writers (and even for some not-so-talented ones).
Books are not like sofas or cars or television sets. People don’t buy just one and hold on to it for 5-20 years. Some speedy readers I know read a book a day. What’s the average? Book a week? The demand for books is there—what we authors need are two things:
1) A hand-holding-hand path out of the jungle, to civilization, where the readers live
2) A product well worth their hard-earned money and time when we arrive there to present our work to them.
I work diligently at helping with #1. Now I wanted to share what I’d learned through trials, hard knocks, painful red ink on the page, and some damned fine writers over the years so that a fellow author might sit with my book and use a few simple (call them what you will: rules, techniques, processes, guidelines) and come out the other side with a book at least twice as good as it was entering the makeover.
Thus INK: Eight Rules To A Better Book was born.
Not of greed; not of pride; not of chance. INK was born because I was destined to write it, and I promise you, those writers who’ve taken the time to read it (one self-proclaimed slow reader devoured it in three hours!) will learn a lifetime of lessons. And it’s a book you can read over and over again. Highlighting, coming back to a section you love or need or just wanted to get straight in your head.
Writing is a process, and like every other skilled profession in the world, there are those to whom it comes naturally; there are great writers and good writers and decent writers and, yes, horrible writers. But I didn’t write INK for any one group. My theory is that no matter where you fall on the spectrum of ability or talent, your prose can always improve. None of us—nor none of “them”—is at the one hundred percent, don’t need to fix a thing stage.
None is perfect.
Lastly, the cover is intentionally simplistic, because I believe in the simplicity (and conversely, the POWER) of the eight rules. They aren’t rocket science and every single writer out there in the world can put them to use. I also have an absolute reason for using the hand print in ink for the cover. It has come to represent the unique signature of every writer on the planet. Each of us is different in some way from the next. Like snowflakes.
Like hand prints.
Well, now that you’ve got the information on the book, get INK – Eight Rules To A Better Book and start writing that better book tomorrow. YOU deserve it, and, so do your readers.
If you would like to view the original post on Rob On Writing, please click the link and you will not only be able to see the content I’ve placed here but you will also gain access to Mr. Guthrie’s other blogs on writing, marketing, and his valuable perspective on many topics; view his published books including the Detective Bobby Mac Thriller Trilogy and the James Pruett Mystery Series; be provided links to where you may contact or follow him; or, learn about RABMAD, the organization he has developed for writers to give back.