Colson Whitehead’s Rules For Writing.

One of my favorite contempoary authors, Colson Whitehead, recently laid out his 11 Rules for Writing over at the New York Times. It’s predictably insightful–and hilarious:

Once your subject finds you, it’s like falling in love. It will be your constant companion. Shadowing you, peeping in your windows, calling you at all hours to leave messages like, “Only you understand me.” Your ideal subject should be like a stalker with limitless resources, living off the inheritance he received after the suspiciously sudden death of his father. He’s in your apartment pawing your stuff when you’re not around, using your toothbrush and cutting out all the really good synonyms from the thesaurus. Don’t be afraid: you have a best seller on your hands.

The best may be rule # 8, though, which he simply says “Is secret.” If you don’t already, you should definitely follow Whitehead on Twitter.