I'm writing a story for the third time, after two (terrible) drafts. Since I'm no good at editing and judge my own work, to the point that I don't even know if I can write or not, I came here and looked for posts of advices given by professional writers, to see how many mistakes I made.
Well, if you take seriously these advices, it looks like writing is a minefield. You can't use the words think -imagine – realize, you should use say but not too often, you must show and don't tell, you need to be descriptive but also take care of dialogues, and so on, to the point that I'm even more confused about my novel than before.
I know my work is not perfect at all, but if I should stick to these rules, I would trash it immediately, because in 250 pages there are definitely times when I broke some of these rules, even if I usually agree with many of them. And editing won't fix that, because I found unlikely to sit down with a looong sheet full of these advices, analyzing page after page in order to look after these kind of mistakes.
So my point is, do I have to be perfect to be a writer? Does a flawless novel even exist?
Because I rely on these advices and I'll use them to improve, but at the same time, if I think of my favourite novels – even successfull ones – I'm not sure that their writers respected these rules so much. And it seems that if I write down these "writing rules" and use them to judge every book I read, almost none will completely "pass the test".
Source: reddit post