A 2017 Resolution

This is a reblog of excellent observation and advice for writers. Roz Morris teaches novelists how to up their game, but her post applies as much to non-fiction writers, including all you student essayists, as it does to novelists.

Here’s an excerpt to get you thinking about your own approach:

A lucky turn of the radio dial this week and I got a real treat: the Radio 2 presenter Jeremy Vine interviewing Brian Eno. The whole piece is worth listening to, but this exchange particularly caught me.

Vine was trying to pin down what made some of Eno’s collaborators so special – David Bowie, David Byrne, Bryan Ferry. He said this: they all had ‘a different quality of imagination’.

And Eno replied: ‘I think everyone has much more imagination than they give themselves credit for. But the difference is that some people take their imaginations seriously.’

Essayists can get stuck in culling proven-standard facts and ideas from others. Maybe it’s time to imagine a twist on a topic, a new idea for a source, or a switch in viewpoint. Give yourself credit for having the imagination to reinvent your work.

Writing well…can be pleasant hard work if we view it for what it really is—a challenge to our creativity, an opportunity to know our own mind, and a chance to share our thoughts and feelings with others.

John R. Trimble



Classic job interview advice:  if asked to lunch, never order the spaghetti. Long, saucy pasta strands are almost impossible to eat with aplomb. Semicolons are the punctuation equivalent of a spaghetti dish. Read more…