What this small town newspaper editor taught Stephen King about writing.

Written by Cole Schafer

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Before Stephen King was Stephen King, he was hired on as a sportswriter at a small-town newspaper under an editor named John Gould.

In King’s book On Writing, he gives Gould high praise by saying that Gould had taught him more in a ten-minute “editing session” than he had ever learned in all his other writing classes combined.

The legend goes…

Gould sits down with a story that King has just turned in, whips out his pen and begins marking the thing up…

“I only took out the bad parts, you know… most of it’s pretty good...”

Gould then hands the story back to King and gives him the following advice…

*John Gould is typing now*

“When you write a story, you’re telling yourself a story. When you rewrite, your main job is taking out all the things that are not the story.”

By Cole Schafer.

P.S. If you’re a fan of Stephen King and his writing advice, you should read what he has to say regarding finding your ideal reader.