Writers like to stick 'notes to self' on their computer screens. 'Show, don't tell!' seems to be a popular one, as is 'be brave!' or 'get on with it!' Until now, all I've had on mine is a zigzaggy snake and a sticker saying 'old stuff rocks' (presents from my children). I wanted a post-it too, but what? For a while 'Facebook can wait' was a serious contender, but then I read this excellent post on layering by Victoria Mixen, and one phrase jumped out and bit me:
“...get the heck out of the way.”
Which I take to mean: the author's place is round the back, pulling the strings, not prancing on stage, waving his learning/research/vocabulary/ego about. Or in other words:
Don't get between the reader and the story.*
Now, this isn't news to me – I've been learning it the hard way for years -- but seeing it end the sentence “Say what you’ve got to say, say it quick, and get the heck out of the way.” brought on that post-it note moment for me.
What do you have stuck to your screen? Wise words? Or ravioli?
*Yes, I know it's different for literary fiction:-)