Writers are always interested in articles, techniques, and instructive blogs that help them better themselves and hone their skills and work on their craft. There are several great blogs that teach many good things but when I read The Ten Commandments for Writers written by pastor and author, Jared C. Wilson, on The Gospel Coalition, I printed the list and placed it near my computer.
Unlike many of other adaptations of the ‘Big Ten’, Wilson’s list flows very closely to the original ten commandments as found in Exodus 20:1-17 and Deuteronomy 5:4-21 and focuses each commandment on an area of a writers life that might need restraint.
Enjoy this great list and share it with your writing friends.
The Ten Commandments for Writers
by Jared C. Wilson
1. Thou shalt have no other gods before God. Neither publication nor fame nor even writing itself shall be your god, but God alone.
2. Thou shalt not make of your writing an idol, serving it as if it is sovereign. Nor shall you look to your gift or craft for the fulfillment and satisfaction and joy only Christ can give in himself.
3. Thou shalt not take the Lord’s name in vain, but shall write ultimately for the fame of his name, not for your own.
4. Thou shalt take a day off every week.
5. Honor your father and your mother. Even if you’re writing about your troubled childhood, don’t do so in ways that shame your parents or throw them under the bus for cheap laughs or tears.
6. Thou shalt not murder, not even in your heart when another writer writes well or when a critic savages your work or when you think somebody stole your idea.
7. Thou shalt not commit adultery. If writing is your mistress, it’s still cheating on your spouse. And you’re not fooling everybody by trying to “keep it real” with the sexuality in your book.
8. Thou shalt not steal anybody’s joy or time. Nor shall you steal anybody’s work and pass it off as your own.
9. Thou shalt not tell lies. Even when writing fiction, tell the truth.
10. Thou shalt not covet your neighbor’s gifts, praise, success, or livelihood.
The greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and the second is like it: Love your reader as yourself.