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Sentence Craft

The sentence is the smallest unit of thought in a novel, and I’ve been finding myself giving more and more sentence-related notes in critiques for webinar students and conference attendees. I’ll do a lot more talking about this in the near future, but I did want to prime you all to start thinking hard about your sentences by sharing an article I read a while ago. This essay may be old news to some, and it’s a bit long, but it’s still an excellent and thought-provoking read. I urge all of you to go through this and give it a lot of thought.

One of my favorite sentences from it:

You don’t develop a style by writing sentences that have no purpose other than to be stylish, sentences that seek to be self-contained works of art.

A-MEN! This perfectly ties into the notes I’ve been giving on overwriting, and also on saying something simple in an overly complicated way. Much more on that soon. The author is Christopher R. Beha, and the essay is here.

Tags:

  1. Julie Daines’s avatar

    Excellent article! Thank you so much for the link!

  2. Peter Dudley’s avatar

    Long, but well written and amusing. Maybe being an engineering major was a better path to writing after all…

  3. sue’s avatar

    A very informative article! Thanks so much for sharing!

  4. Chris Sorensen’s avatar

    Very well said. Viva la no fluff!

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