A contradictory word on craft.
Writers are taught to value craft above all else. I think that's a problem. Don't get me wrong, you need craft. Craft can create form and clarity out of chaos. It can carry you through when the muse just isn't there.
It's confusing because craft is something we can grade. Contests are based on craft. Winners are beautifully written, or at least have fewer faults than the competitors.
But sales are based on story. On engaging readers' emotions. To a lesser extent, readers delight in jokes and phrases that tickle, or new ideas, or books set in exotic places, vicariously living a different life.
Bottom line is, dazzle with craft all you want, but be sure to connect with the reader emotionally.
Published since 2009, over the years I've accumulated various items of writing
wisdom. The Third Tuesday Writing Tidbit showcases these items in no particular
here to see all 3T Tidbits.