Word Wrangling

Writers are not born; they are created through hard work.

WORD WRANGLING

Writing is about wrangling words to convey a visual in your reader’s mind. And, to do it well, you need to understand words and what they mean. You need to understand how they connect to one another before attempting to string them into sentences, let alone paragraphs.

Unlike a bad painter, we will still see the image they have created. But the clearer the painter is with their vision and the better they are at working their chosen medium, the better we see the over-all image. Never mind any of the subtle complexities they’re also trying to convey. And so it is with writers. You need to understand words, your chosen tools of the trade, so you too can convey your own vision.

LEARNING YOUR CRAFT

You might think it’s a waste of time taking writing classes because you can get published online without bothering with editors or agents. You may think it an utter waste of time to study the craft of words. Ignoring the need to hone your skills. Or to structure and re-structure your sentences so that each connects and flows with the one either side of it. Or the need to breathe life into your characters and thereby involve the reader so that they not only forget where they are but, on occasion, maybe even who they are. So caught up are they in the world you’ve created for them, you’ve transported them elsewhere.

HARD WORK PAYS OFF

It all seems so simple. But, as anyone who writes full-time knows, it isn’t. Like the best artist, you need to learn the tools of your trade. You need to learn how to blend words. You need to know what power lies in the heart of every word. And how to build them into effective structures, those all-important sentences, paragraphs, and chapters. Each building block essential to the next. You need to understand how to weed out weak verbs, evict loose adverbs, while driving the nail into the coffin of bad spelling and grammar. Not to mention verbalizing your dialogue out loud and listening to the nuances, till what you hear rings true to the ear.

A garish picture is just as jarring to the senses, as a paragraph or chapter that’s too reliant on filler and light on story. Slapping on the layers of paint will not hide the multitude of mistakes or make bad writing better.

Work at your craft. Hone your skills. And dig deep into that well of persistence, till you’ve written, checked, and polished the best piece of prose you can. Believe me, in the end, you’ll be glad you did.

2 Comments Word Wrangling

    1. Alexandra

      Delighted to hear it had some impact for you, Kenny. I’m looking to add a few ‘Primers’ on writing, and also some crib-sheets on grammar, which I encourage you to steal and use … daily! :D

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