The Atlantic’s Jessica Lahey interviews Stephen King on grammar, teaching writing to kids, and the seminal On Writing. She asks how teachers can encourage kids to close the door and write without fear. King:
In a class situation, this is very, very hard. That fearlessness always comes when a kid is writing for himself, and almost never when doing directed writing for the grade (unless you get one of those rare fearless kids who’s totally confident). The best thing — maybe the only thing — is to tell the student that telling the truth is the most important thing, much more important than the grammar.
Likewise, Vonnegut said, “write to please just one person.” Knowing this, and staunchly following his advice, I used to have a person in mind, unwaveringly, when I wrote. Only much later did I find out that person was supposed to be me.
[via Patrick Cooper]