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Author Sean Platt Releases SHUNNING CLICHES

Writers who aim to make a living from their fiction shouldn't be afraid of genre clichés, a top horror fiction author has claimed.

Sean Platt, whose success in self-publishing horror and sci-fi serials has allowed him to quit working as a copywriter and write fiction full-time, said authors should know and embrace the clichés of their chosen genre or genres.

"Shunning clichés is now cliché, but smart writers know better," Platt said. "There are a limited number of stories in the world. All writers are saturated in the same conventions and tropes."

Platt's comments followed the recent publication of The Most Annoying Horror Movie Clichés by popular movie review site, HorrorMovies.ca.

"There's nothing inherently annoying or wrong about horror clichés, or clichés of any kind if they're not there by accident, and are articulated with style," Platt said. "The danger in cliché is not knowing one when it stares you in the face."

"Plot clichés and character clichés are shorthand for a fiction writer," he added. "Solid storytelling doesn't come from avoiding clichés. It comes from understanding why they work and reinterpreting them; making them fresh for your readers. Use cliches creatively, and they can help you write with speed, and a flair of voice that grabs readers by the eyes and refuses to let go."

Platt, co-host of the Self Publishing Podcast, which helps writers become successful authors of commercial fiction, also said that authors no longer need to be pigeonholed into a single genre.

"The indie publishing revolution means a productive author can put out 20, 30 or 50 books a year if they want to," Platt said. "Writing so many books means you can write across a range of niches and genres to keep your writing fresh and creative self inspired. You must do the hard work early, learning the tropes of different genres so you can bend the rules when it's time.

"Being a writer with a range of outputs is like being a professional singer with a stunning voice whether they're singing jazz, classical or pop. As a writer, it's important to develop your voice, but if you want to go pro it's equally important to make sure that voice can sing more than one song."

Platt and his co-author, David Wright will release their newest title Available Darkness 2 in February.

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