March 22, 2017 @ 1:37 AM

Seven sensible steps to success as a writer. Step 3 (Continued):
Choosing the right word

Words carry many meanings – and for a writer, success depends in large part upon choosing absolutely the right word for what you want to say, as well as the way you put those words together.

There’s more than one way to construct a sentence correctly, or to shape a paragraph. And if those choices truly reflect yourself and your ideas, you may find in the words the almost limitless flexibility and beauty of which language is capable.

In the hands of a master, the written word can carry all the sonority and profundity of a musical instrument. Adjectives, similes, metaphors and so on, are the keys and scales on which a writer plays, .........


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March 15, 2017 @ 11:44 PM

Seven sensible steps to success as a writer:
Step 3 (continued):

A writer needs to be read…

There are some writers who will say that the rules of grammar don’t matter: that the only important thing is to express yourself in whatever words using whatever structure seems best to you.But for me, the test of that belief is to study a foreign language.

You can acquire the broadest vocabulary of individual words. But unless you also know how those words fit together as nouns and pronouns, verbs, tenses, adjectives, subjects and predicates to establish meaning, you’ll remain virtually incomprehensible.

I’ve always believed the first duty of a professional writer is to be read. If readers toss your book away because.........


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March 3, 2017 @ 10:55 AM

Seven sensible steps to success as a writer

Step 3: Understand how words work...

If we writers necessarily erect those constructs we call our books on the foundations of all that has gone before, words are the straw in the bricks we use to build them.

The initial idea might provide the blueprint – grammar and syntax give the cement and plumblines. But without the strength and cohesion of the words themselves, there is always a risk of the edifice collapsing to the ground.

Over the past few decades I got the impression there had been less emphasis in the schools on the rules of (English) spelling and sentence construction.

The philosophy seemed to be that the child would pick these things up when required.

But having.........

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