The Rest


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Heinlein's Rules For Writing

Submitted by scifiwriterb on Sun, 04/16/2006 - 8:57pm

Hi all,

I'm sharing some advice given by Dean Wesley Smith in which he said aspiring writers should follow Heinlein's rules for writing.

Dean wrote:

Those of you thinking about making a living at this business, you must know and follow these rules. Heinlein wrote them into an article back in the '40s, and they still apply 100% today. If you think you are an exception,
you are fooling yourself.

Heinlein's Rules

Rule #1: You must write.

Rule #2: You must finish what you write.

Rule #3: You must never rewrite (unless to editorial demand, and then only if you agree)

Rule #4: You must mail what you finish.

Rule #5: You must keep the story in the mail until someone buys it.

That's it. So simple, so hard to do. The killer are all five rules.

#1 kills those who think they want to be a writer but just can never find the time.

#2 kills those writers who are so afraid of having anything finished.

#3 kills everyone because of the huge myth that rewriting is critical. (Myth fostered by universities and people who can't write a saleable word).

#4 kills every writer with any kind of fear.

#5 kills every writer who thinks that someone else's opinion is more important than their own.

Such simple rules, so very, very hard to follow.

Good luck!


A link to Heinlein's Rules is at

Astronomy Workshop for Writers(like Physics for Poets?)

Submitted by scifiwriterb on Sun, 04/16/2006 - 7:11pm

Hi all,

I'm passing on an e-mail from Gordon Van Gelder who's promoting an astronomy workshop for SF writers.

Gordon Van Gelder wrote:

>I thought this might be of interest:

---Gordon V.G.

*Astronomy Workshop for Teachers in Wyoming

>I'm trying to get funds out of NASA for an annual two-week workshop in Wyoming
that will be for teaching writers more about astronomy, in order to improve the
quality and quantity of astronomy in fiction. There will be an overnight trip
to a 2.3 meter telescope, hands-on exercises processing Hubble images, and
more. Costs will be held as low as possible, with full rides and more for
qualified writers.

I was unsuccessful with this last year, and the panel wanted to have some
information that there was actually a market for the workshop. Please take five
minutes and complete a survey that will help me address this issue in the new
proposal. Please pass this onto other writers you might know.

Here is the link:


Mike Brotherton
Author of STAR DRAGON (Tor Books)
Science Fiction/Blog:
(307) 755-0398 (home); (307) 766-5402 (work)