Critiquing my first short story, my writer's group made comments like "skilled transitions" and "flowing sentences". They were smiling so I assumed it was a good thing because frankly, I had no idea what they were talking about. I just wrote.
Until it made sense.
Until it sounded good.
Pouring over three years of Writer's Magazines, I was overwhelmed by critiques on show don't tell, passive verbs, action verbs, extrapolation, character development, cause and effect, blah, blah, blah, blah. Writing to the rules is like diagramming a sentence before speaking. (You know what I mean if you have ever learned a foreign language. There’s a mental exercise before we ever open our mouths. Is the noun feminine or masculine? Does the object agree? Does it go first or last? How do I conjugate the verb, present, past, future? Or is it subjunctive)?
But I finally get it. I scour my writing for redundancies, fluff, and passive action. I might even loose a goodnights sleep worrying over my characters or mentally rewriting a chapter. But mostly, I just write.
Until it makes sense.
Until it sounds good.