How’s it going? I wasn’t quite sure my brother would have brought this up, but then again, considering how deeply he’s embedded into internet culture, I shouldn’t have been surprised.
But I was.
Let’s get to it.
I was looking at a post on a website–somebody wanted ghostwriting services for fiction, and offered ongoing work for the right dude/dudette. The pay was a teeny bit on the low end, but I was thinking it might be worth it for awhile to get my feet wet providing a new service, because hey, it was in my genre wheelhouse for sure.
Then I looked into the comments, and some of them were pretty sobering.
I told my brother all this, and even sent him the link. After I told him I looked into the comments, he said:
“That breaks the rules. Never read the comments.”
I’d forgotten about the rules of the internet. He’d mentioned them before, but this time, I actually looked them up.
There were a lot of other ones–some made sense, and some were just creative blabbering.
That reminds me of fiction writing and copy, too. For a lot of fiction, you have to do research (especially for historical, steampunk, and what-have-ya). That gives you realism to draw on. There are other things like genre conventions, too–readers expect X to happen in Y type of story…or else.
Those are the rules.
Copywriting has some types of projects that require more research than others–that research is something you have to abide by as part of the process. Like the rules, but slightly different. I’m thinking of the health and financial markets here, mostly, but there are others.
Rules are meant to be known, and then broken, in that order (there are exceptions, unlike some of the internet rules, of course).
Even though these web rules were meant to be funny, I think someone, somewhere really tried to tell people important things.
So you can think of the rules for the internet, fiction, copy, and more as principles to abide by…or as something to be literarily trounced just because.
No matter what, it’s best to know the value of what you’re ditching by the roadside as you roar off into the new dawn of your current project.
Until next time,