Book reviewers and advance readers are one important element in the publishing process. It’s hard for the author and the editors to be objective about the book they’ve been immersed in for months, maybe years. Enter readers and reviewers who usually have little or no personal stake or emotional involvement in the book. We hope…
Yes, so aware these days that “darkly we peer through the glass.” Praying for “vision to transcend the obstructive…”
I taught from the following list at a recent writers workshop. Afterwards, a couple of wide-eyed writers said to me, “You really want good writing.” Well, yes, I do! The better-written a manuscript comes to me, the more I like it. Here at Cladach we may resonate with the premise and material of a nonfiction…
These troublesome words tend to hide like gremlins in our writing (especially in fiction, but also nonfiction). We often use these words compulsively, but often they aren’t needed. Remember, less is more. Conciseness makes better, stronger, clearer writing. Do a search for—and delete unnecessary uses of—the following: very just that nice interesting look / looked…
One constantly-recurring theme for writers is that we must strive for clarity. To that end, at my workshop on “A Checklist for Writers” I shared my list of writing techniques. Then I offered this bonus “checklist” that uses tongue-in-cheek humor to help us avoid murky writing. (This list comes from Professor Howard Culbertson at Southern…
Here’s an eclectic list of books, varied in subject, genre, and form. I like to find the best in popular books, old and new, and find hidden gems that are less-well known but sometimes even more worthy of being found on a “best-seller” list. Perhaps you’ll discover a new favorite among these: (In no particular…
How does the writer effectively pull in the reader, take hold of his hand, and keep him reading? How does a writer achieve her goal of changing her reader’s thinking, of painting pictures in his mind that give pleasure, insight, and hope? The writer’s success depends largely on how she arranges her words in sentences.…
“To get the right word in the right place is a rare achievement.” ~ Mark Twain The most apt word you can find put into the place that it will work best. Picking the right word and putting it in the best place in the sentence. The right word in the best place. The right…
We need to perceive the Truth.
Yet, darkly we peer through the glass.
Clean me for use
Free me to serve
Lift me to reach
That I may wash windows for You.
Wrong doctrine obscures
Gray living besmears
Raw weather, it blurs
The pane on this side.
Provide a soft cloth—not abrasive
The vision to transcend the obstructive
And courage to rub for perfection
Till, through one clear corner,
Someone sees You.
from the book, Remembering Softly: A Life In Poems © 2016