Great rules, but obvious and redundant. It’s like telling a dancer to dance, a musician to play or sing, a painter…
Heinlein’s rules pre-suppose you’ve decided to make a career of writing, but it is not the only way to be a writer. Keep a journal, for example, or write letters, invent fairy tales for your children: you’re a writer.
It’s a decision you make for yourself to write privately or publicly. Either way, you are still a writer, a wordsmith, a scrivener.
If you are a writer (public or private), here are my rules:
- read, read passionately, read everything, read continuously, day and night;
- listen, hear syntax, hear rhythm, hear voice, listen and hear vocabulary, meaning, context, words, the meaning of life — your meaning of life;
- use your senses — what does it look like, taste, feel, smell or sound like?;
- The Wide Margin: A Writer’s Rules, A Writer’s Tools (scriptmag.com)
- The Truth About Writing Advice (avajae.blogspot.com)