Ray Bradbury gives writers some rules to follow to become a good writer. His first rule is reminds me of Heinlein’s rule.
1. Rule One Write One Short Story a Week
Bradbury says it is impossible to write 52 bad stories in a row. If you keep it up, you will eventually write a great story.
In addition, Bradbury believes that short stories are better than novels for you to start because you will have a sense of accomplishment that propels you forward.
2. Go on a 1000 day reading program.
Bradbury suggests that you read 1 short story, 1 poem, and 1 essay from various fields every day. He suggests essays from Aldus Huxley, George Bernard Shaw, and Lauren Eisley. In addition, he suggests poems by Pope, Shakespere, and Frost.
Short stories should come from pepole like John Collier, Edith Warton, Washington Irving, Edgar Allen Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Richard Mattheson, John Chever, and others.
He says that at the end of the 1000 days your mind will be full of metaphors which is the stuff of great writing.
3. Get Rid of friends who do not believe in you.
You do not need want any negativity around you. You will succeed so why have people around you that will tell you the opposite. There is no place for Frenemys.
4. Watch Old Movies
5. Write for joy
Do not write for money. Do not write what you think will sell. Write what you want to write. He says that the solution to writers block is writing what you want to write not trying to make a statement or trying to write something that is deep and profound.
Write what you want to read and be true to your own fears, hopes, and desires.
6. Make a few lists of 10
Make a list of 10 things you love and write about it. Make a list of 10 people you love and write about them.
Make a list of 10 things you hate and write about it. Make a list of 10 people you hate and write about them. Bradbury suggests that you kill them.
Make a list of 10 things you hope.
Make a list of ten things you fear and write about it.
7. Type out anything that comes to your mind until the page starts to take characters and they take over.
Do not ask what will I do. Ask who am I. Use word association and just start writing.
The point is to write who are you.
8. Surprise yourself what you will write.
To summarize, Bradbury’s suggestions to writers is write what you want, read plenty of good literature and seek joy.