Five Tips on Fiction Writing from Barack Obama

No, jackass, this has nothing to do with his birth certificate. 

Yahoo! has obtained a copy of David Maraniss's forthcoming book on Barry's early years, Barack Obama: The Story, and has a study-notes rundown of interesting shit you didn't know about Obama, including his inability to dunk and his ability to do an awesome 1969-Mick-Jagger impersonation. Read the rest over there.

Most relevant to those of us who sling words for a living, the future President also had some advice to a friend's manuscript: an Obama Fiction Doctrine? Here's Barack's advice to a young writer: 

1)  "Careful about too many adverbs, particularly describing how people speak (Paul asked disbelievingly, etc.) It can be cumbersome and a bit intrusive on the reader"

2) "Resist the temptation of easy satire...Good satire has to be a little muted. Should spill out from under a seemingly somber situation."

3)  "Try to get the basic stats on the characters out of the way early {Paul was 24} so that you can spend the rest of the story revealing character."

4) "Think about the key moment(s) in the story, and build tension leading to those key moments."

5) "[W]rite outside your own experience...I find that this works the fictive imagination harder."

| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Phlog Archives