Oakley Hall wrote and he taught others how to take the stories they created and turn them into novels.
His rules are a blueprint for a waste-free manuscript.
I have come a long way since I started learning how to write so some of the rules made me nod, some made me think and one made me duck under the desk to check my shoe laces ;)
OAKLEY HALL'S RULES FOR WRITING FICTION
1. Write every day
2. Observe and listen
3. Employ all the senses
4. Use strong verbs
6. A specific always beats an abstraction
7. Describe people and places in terms of motion
8. Anglo-Saxon words are usually more effective than Romance-language-based words
9. Fiction is dramatisation:
10. In dialogue keep speeches short
11. Look for likenesses, parallels, contrasts, antitheses and reversals
12. Beware the use of the habitual case (would), the passive voice and the word ``there.''
13. Plotting is compulsion versus obstacles
14. In the second draft start deleting adverbs
Westerns have been noticeably absent from my TBR list:
I can only remember reading three:
All the Pretty Horses ~ Cormac McCarthy
Shane ~ Jack Shaefer
Call of the Wild ~ Jack London
(No. Cold Mountain slipped into the lost and hasn't been found again -- I know it's around here somewhere ;) )
I'm going to start at the Oakley Hall's beginning: I'm looking for a copy of Warlock. And I have a hankering to read True Grit by Charles Portis ;)
Are you looking for a challenging new genre?