February 24, 2017 @ 8:54 AM

Seven sensible steps to success as a writer.

Step 2 (continued):

Christopher Robin

Speaking of influences, not long ago I bought a copy of the Christopher Robin poems by A.A. Milne for my grand-daughter.

I loved them as a child and would recite them to anyone who’d listen. ’The King’s Breakfast’ … ‘Rice Pudding’. Surely eveybody knows them...!

Well, I hadn’t looked at the poems for these past sixty years or more (which I can tell you is a shock to write down). But reading them over again for Em, I was amazed to realise how influential they’d been on me as a writer.

It wasn't the subjects so much. But the structure of the phrases – the rhythms of the words – the flow of the sentences – the building up of point and counterpoint, tension and relaxation... I could see my own style reflected clearly in the lines.

I’d quite forgotten: but what a surprise – and what joy in the autumn years to discover the first days of spring again.

Which leads to the next step…

3. Studying how the words work...


Photo: The original Christopher Robin animal toys ... Kanga, Pooh, Eyore, Tigger and Piglet, recently restored and on display with their book.