Archives

24.10.18

The power of the precise paragraph

Paragraphs are a grey area for many writers, especially those who grew up in the era when schools were experimenting with ways to teach grammar. Some ways were pretty whacky. Was the rule about new paragraphs to make one whenever we drew breath or was that when we stuck in a comma? The rules were not precise.

Do paragraphs really matter? Can writing be persuasive even if the paragraphs are ill-formed and inconsistent? Of course, it can. Stories can engage our emotions, and ideas get us excited even when the grammar is wrong.  Read More

 
17.10.18

Why we all love “listicles” and should you use them?

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen Covey, is one of the best-known business books of all time, and one of the best known “list” book titles.

Listicles are articles structured by numbers (five steps, three essentials, 101 things to do). They are hugely popular for obvious reasons (and some less obvious ones).

Of course, a list breaks a big task into a bunch of small ones. We would all like to be highly effective (big goal) and we are thrilled to think all we have to do is master seven habits (small steps) to get there.  Read More

 
11.10.18

Wicked ways to write well

I wrote my first #book in third grade. My friend Caroline and I both did.

We each folded a page from our exercise books, again and again, to make all the pages, trimmed the edges, and stapled the spine. Then we wrote teeny tiny stories.

It was such #fun, and it reminds me of a lesson I learned long ago: I #write best when I have fun.  Read More