Charles Bukowski’s Rules for Writing

1.

Give yourself time to mature as a writer.

“Well, I’m 34 now. If I don’t make it by the time I’m 60, I’m just going to give myself 10 more years.”

2.

Let your creativity find whatever outlet it needs.

“Now print my occasionals out by hand and point them up with drawings (like any other madman). Sometimes I just throw the stories away and hang the drawings up in the bathroom (sometimes on the roller).”

3.

Treat the submission of your work like it’s a job.

“I remember when I used to write and send [Story Magazine] fifteen or twenty or more stories a month, and later, three or four or five—and mostly, at least, one a week. From New Orleans and Frisco and Miami and L.A. and Philly and St. Louis and Atlanta and Greenwich Village and Houston and everyplace else.”

4.

Sometimes you have to write a lot of bad stuff to get to the good stuff.

“I’m not one to look back on wanton waste as complete loss—there’s music in everything, even defeat.”

5.

It’s ok to rely on magic.

“Went back to night school there about a year ago and took some art courses, commercial and otherwise but then too, they moved too slow for me and wanted too much obeisance. I have no definite talent or trade, and how I stay alive is largely a matter of magic.”

 

Read the full article from LitHub here

 

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