"Write your story as it needs to be written. Write it honestly, and tell it as best you can. I'm not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter."
To all my fellow rule-following-inclined friends, did you hear that? Neil THE MAN Gaiman himself said that there are only three rules that matter. Write a story honestly, the best you can, and how it needs to be written.
To everyone who likes to break the rules: Neil THE MAN Gaiman gives you permission.
I think that deserves a cookie, don't you?