Thursday, February 2, 2012

Occam's Razor and Advice by Stephen King

Sometimes we overthink things.

Okay, maybe you don't. I know I do. Sometimes.

And sometimes, there are advice out there that go right to the heart of the matter.

You may have heard of Occam's razor (or Ockham's razor, depending which part of the planet you're from). This principle says that when there are various competing hypotheses, the one that makes the fewest assumptions is usually the correct one. Basically, the simplest explanation is the most plausible one.

Stephen King was asked what advice he would give newbie writers. In this short one-minute clip, you will learn all you need to know about being a writer.


Is is simplistic? Maybe. 

Is it accurate? Does it go right to the heart of the matter? Can you in any way-shape-or-form dispute it?


Sometimes we overthink things. And instead of being stuck with thoughts that paralyze us, maybe we should be engaged in the act of doing. 

Write a lot and Read a lot.

Fight the good fight!

19 comments:

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    1. You and me both, my friend. I particularly love his final comment :)

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  2. I LOVE that clip of Stephen King. And he's so right. It's the best thing any writer can do, it makes you a better crit partner, and a better judge of your own writing once you learn to differentiate between strong and weak in others'. Thanks for this post! Hope you're doing well. :)

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    1. Thanks, Kathryn. I am doing well. I knew that true writers will immediately connect with this clip. I've also found that even when I'm stuck -- be it for new ideas, for inspiration, for motivation, for whatever -- when I read, something magical happens. Take care!

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  3. Ciao Ara,

    Honest suggestions from an outstanding author. I, too, think his last comment is the best.

    Keep reading...keep writing!

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    1. Grazie, Marie. I must admit, that last comment is something I've said a few times :) But if not for that, it means we don't have confidence in our own ability. And we have to believe, above all else, that we have stories to tell and the ability to tell them passionately. Ciao!

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  4. Read a lot, write a lot. That about covers the basics. Great advice from Mr. King, thanks for sharing it, Ara!

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    1. Exactly. Simple and spot on. It is shocking how many believe the basics don't apply to them. :)

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  5. Interesting post as always!
    Have heard of this King chap....must look up some of his articles...(crawls back into cave:)

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    1. LOL! Somehow I don't think you could fit in a cave ;D He seems to be on to something. Not sure about that t-shirt though :)

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  6. Like everything else worth doing, there's no magic bullet. We just have to put in the time. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Hard work and dedicated time on the things that move our goals forward. Maybe that's the magic bullet? :) Thanks, Gwen.

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  7. Agree totally. Some people don't like hearing it because it's not sexy, gimmicky advice, but that's the game.

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    1. That's such an important point, Daniel. Everyone wants the gimmick that will give them the "insider" secret. The secret has always been the same.

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  8. Love it, Ara! And don't so many of us start out thinking we can do better....then we find out how hard it is. :-)

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    1. *raises hand* I was so silly when I started. I was sure that I could run circles around the process. Yet, I still struggle with some of the basics. Thankfully the formula, if followed religiously, pays back in dividends.

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  9. Hi Ara! Kerry Schafer pointed the way to your blog. Love that King clip--he really hit the nail on the head.

    Nice to meet another writer. :)

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    1. Thanks for visiting, Linda. I just read her post. I am touched and humbled by her generosity.

      And to have one of the wolf-pack visit my blog is taking it to the next level :) Personal question: where can I find your t-shirt? and do they sell a "kick ass writer dude?" :D

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  10. nice opinion.. thanks for sharing....

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