No good for the gander
I was rereading some of my favourites. Anne McCaffrey's Catteni series and some new books from my favourite authors. I've been going through my books getting rid of any word that ends with ly and all the were's and was's. I'm told they weaken your writing and make you look like an amateur. I want to call BS. because as I was reading there on the first line of a brand new book by a well established author is the a was. Yes, the dreaded was that is supposed to be stripped because it weakens your writing. Then two lines later there is an word with ly.
Now, don't get me wrong I still need to work on my craft. My sales alone tell me I need to work on my sales but I'm wondering if what I'm told to work on is actually what i need to work on. I'm told I need to describe more and tell less. Except as I was reading Anne McCaffrey she tells a lot and she hardly describes anything. So why is it alright for Anne to do this and I'm not.
I've also been told I need to work on my plot. Every plot element should comply to the hero's cycle and yadda yadda. There are a stack load of rules. Yet there was Anne with a character who loved designing ships in a high tech ship yard who gives it up to rough it out on an alien world because there is aliens. You are never told why this genius would just throw it all away for this random planet. Her motivations are never explained. There is no real conflict. I mean the so called bad guy doesn't even get a scene and they let him get away with it in the end. There is no return over the threshold either and the character never grows. They finish the story in the same state as the start. Again why is it alright for some authors and not for me.
I will be working on my writing but not on these two things. Firstly the whole description thing annoys me. I'm dyslexic and it is hard to read. I mean wasted words annoy me. I don't need you to spend two paragraphs telling me we are in a field. Just tell me we are in a field. And the plot thing is because I use a romance plot structure which is different to the whole hero's journey. Basically I go with boy meets girl. They like each other, face some trouble maybe break up or come on rocky times relationship wise. Fix things all round and live happily ever after. Yes there are elements to the hero's journey but the threshold thing is very subtle to non existent. The conflict doesn't have to be pronounced though there should be something to keep the audience interested.
When I do find out what really is wrong with my writing I'll work on it but in the mean time thanks for the feedback people but if what I'm doing is good enough for Anne it good enough for me.