The Write Conversation By Henry In: Writing On September 12, 2014 | 2 Comments Tags: craft, Discipline, Edie Melson, encouragement, Fiction, journey, learning, Perfectionist, The Write Conversation, writing This week, I am honored to be posting a guest blog on Edie Melson’s The Write Conversation. My subject: Being a Perfectionist Writer. Here’s the link: http://ow.ly/Bq2B5
As a teacher of writing you may be interested in this new and different book on this subject, which critics have already said …
Your Write Your Tale Off! is like Elements of Style by Strunk and White. I’m amazed!
Karl Milde, Patent Lawyer
Indispensable advice, as useful to me as Stephen King’s On Writing, Elmore Leonard’s 10 Rules of Writing, William Zinsser’s On Writing Well, and Sol Stein’s Stein on Writing.
Bill Anderson, Professional Reviewer, Amazon.com
This book should be in the hands of every Chairperson of English throughout the colleges and universities in this country and elsewhere.
Dr. Joseph S. Maresca, Hall of Fame reviewer, Amazon.com
First Prize, Self-Help Books, Next Generation Indie Book Awards.
7 lengthy five-star professional reviews on Amazon.com. Also on Amazon you can examine the book’s first pages, a few “Surprise Me!” pages, and its covers.
I would like to send you a copy of this book, in hopes that after reading it you would like to inform your students about it —as it may well be a most useful way for them to improve their writing.
Before I describe the essence of this book …
I may be preaching to the choir on this: but my effort to interest you on this subject is not as an advertiser but a publicist. Advertising involves describing a book in your media without giving you the chance (or a free copy) to evaluate the book in advance —while publicity involves giving you a free copy so you can examine it before informing your students of its worth. Here you are the Portal, the Gatekeeper, through which all exemplary matter will pass and all less so will perish —and I would not dare deprive you the right to exercise this privilege. This said . . .
Write Your tale Off! is a literary tool box that contains some fifty literary devices, formatted as fifty lessons, each of which describes what each device is and how to create it whenever you want. Each lesson begins with a passage by a usually famous author that exemplifies how each literary device is used, then the lesson describes the device’s anatomy so clearly and simply that you can visualize its construction and create it on your own. No other book takes such an elemental and easily teachable approach to learning how to write well. This publication doesn’t delve into such personal “warranties and indemnities” as organizing your time, commitment, writing an effective query letter, developing a platform, etc. It is ONLY about how to assemble the atoms of language into molecules of magnificent prose. Below is its Table of Contents …
Overture … 8
1. Use Information Responsibly … 16
2. Select Simple Words and Phrases … 20
3. Portray a Subject Clearly … 23
4. Say More with Simpler Writing … 26
5. Dramatize, not Describe, your Subject … 28
6. Discern between Denotation and Connotation … 30
7. Use Expressive Verbs … 35
8. Increase Verb Density … 40
9. Vary Sentence Structure … 43
10. Uncover Truth with an Unreliable Narrator … 46
11. Arrange Words in a Forceful Order … 49
12. Draw the Reader in by Leaving Information Out … 52
13. Create a Rousing Effect … 54
14. Back Facts with Examples … 56
15. Foster Intimacy by Contrasting Opposites … 58
16. Add Meaning with Sentence Fragments … 62
17. Link Ideas with Transit Expressions … 64
18. Expand Meaning with Parallel Structure … 68
19. Describe an Action before Revealing its Cause … 72
20. Create Sensory Impressions on a Flat Page … 74
21. Define a Physical or Abstract Subject … 76
22. Characterize a Subject Convivially … 80
23. Arrange Information in a Natural Order … 82
24. Paint Pictures with Words … 85
25. Reveal a Complex Subject in a Simple Manner … 88
26. Convince by Reasoning with Logic … 92
27. Support Judgments Directly or Reversely … 105
28. Differentiate between Fact and Opinion … 108
29. Change the Minds of Your Dissenters … 110
30. Develop the Writing’s Controlling Idea … 114
31. Guide the Writing through its Controlling Idea … 118
32. Achieve Unity through Point of View … 124
33. Appeal to the Emotions … 128
34. Help Readers Help Themselves … 132
35. Intensify Meaning with Figurative Language … 136
36. Inflate Meaning with Understatement … 142
37. Underline Meaning with Hyperbole … 144
38. Reveal Character and Scene through Action … 146
39. Telegraph Intent with Symbolic Cues … 148
40. Enchant with Transposition … 150
41. Elucidate Meaning with Allusion … 152
42. Reveal Larger Truths through Paradox … 154
43. Amuse with Satire, Sarcasm, Parody … 157
44. Entertain with Humor … 160
45. Amplify Meaning with the Sounds of Words … 166
46. Dramatize Prose through Tone … 170
47. Portray Character through Voice … 174
48. Write Lively Dialogue … 178
49. Revise the Writing … 185
50. Putting It All Together … 186
The Anatomy of Formatting … 190
Title . . . . . . . . . . . Write Your Tale Off!
Price . . . . . . . . . . . $14.99, 6 x 9 inches, 204 pages, 4 illustrations
ISBN # . . . . . . . . . 9–781514–849095
Author . . . . . . . . . Robert Brown Butler
If you would like to inform your students of this book, give me your best street address and I will send you a copy. Together I pray we can knit our hearts in an unslipping knot toward informing the public about this essential and interesting publication.
Robert Brown Butler,
Architect & Author
20 Hazel Hill Road
Regarding the author … I graduated from Cornell in 1964 (B. Arch.) and have been involved in every aspect of architecture for more than fifty years, including authoring eight books on architecture, five of them for McGraw-Hill. I am a prominent authority in my field. For nearly fifteen years I kept a little notebook of writing tips for my personal use. When last summer a literary agent saw it, she said I should publish it, so I shaped my notes into this sharply crafted opus.
Thank you, Robert. Great information!