Today I was perusing Sue Monk Kidd’s website (and discovered that The Secret Life of Bees is being made into a movie and will be out in October), and came across this little tidbit she posted in a list of advice she’d give to writers. Here was number seven:
“Err on the side of audacity.
One day it occurred to me that most writers, myself included, erred on the side of being too careful in their writing. I made a pact with myself that I would quit playing it safe when what the story really wanted… what my heart really wanted, was to take a big chance. The best writing requires some daring– a little literary skydiving. Look at your idea and ask yourself: how can I make this larger? The novelist E. M. Forster once said that a novel should deliver a series of small astonishments. After I finish each chapter, I read it with an eye toward figuring out where I’ve played it safe, where I backed off, where the small astonishment was lost.”