Take this as a first principle: Writing is a complex activity. It is much more than just stringing correctly spelled words across the page or screen with commas in all the right places. Good writing requires that the writer pay attention to what the world looks and smells and sounds like, how people reveal themselves by their clothing and actions and speech. Good writing requires clear thinking, but even as I write that, it seems a simplification. Writing is a way to capture thinking, in almost the same way as a tape recorder captures speech, but writing is also a way of thinking, or a way to summon up thoughts, haul them out of the subconscious into the light so that both writer and reader can examine those thoughts and test them out. Good writing also requires the writer’s careful reading: to get information and inspiration, to steal/borrow strategies from other writers, and to read his/her own writing in the process of revision.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *