Words are alive

Emerson was reportedly speaking of Michel de Montaigne, a sixteenth-century Frenchman and his literary idol. “The sincerity and marrow of the man reaches to his sentences. I know not anywhere the book that seems less written. It is the language of conversation transferred to a book. Cut these words, and they would bleed; they are vascular and alive. One has the same pleasure in it that we have in listening to the necessary speech of men about their work, when any unusual circumstance give momentary importance to the dialogue.”

A great writer appears on the page in a voice as individual and distinctive as his or her thoughts. Relax into your voice. Be your unique self, open your heart and let your voice shine.

Words will flow

"Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river." Lisa See, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan

As writers, we need to read in order to fill up the well of creativity.

Reading good books broadens and expands one’s mind, vocabulary, and horizons. It exposes one to new writing styles, voices, ideas, and viewpoints. It gives one the opportunity to learn about writing by studying how our betters use words, structure sentences, stories, and arguments.

We can learn from pretty much anyone and anything. Learning what not to do almost as important as learning what to do. So, please excuse me while I get back to my book…

Words and the senses

Words and the senses

As wonderful as words are, we have to admit they have limits. However, they can be especially powerful when used in combination with the senses.

How much more effective is a whispered “I love you,” when punctuated by kisses. How well an “I’m sorry for your loss,” goes with a touch of the hand; “Do you remember…” goes with a specific scent or melody from the past.

When editing your story, check to see that you have deepened point of view by including, amongst your dialogue, all the senses.

When Words are Scarce

When words are scarce

Even the best writers are sometimes at a loss for words. There are times words fail us. Times when extremes of shock, sadness, or love leave us speechless.

At times like these, rather than retreating without saying a word, finding something heartfelt to say, even when it seems impossible, can make all the difference in the world to the recipient.