Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Forming an elegant sentence is an art form. Some writers seem to pick perfect word combinations with ease, while others spend hours on a single phrase, desperately shuffling words, hoping to strike the winning combination.

I am in the latter group.

Sometimes words don’t flow - just don’t feel right. Replacing a clunky word with a synonym, something a bit more streamlined, might help. Splitting one long sentence in to two, or joining two shorter sentences together, may also fix the problem.

When all else fails, the writer may end up deleting the words that make up one of their favourite ideas; banishing those words back to the notebook from whence they came.

But somehow it all feels worthwhile. Finding a modicum of sense, or clarity, or (God willing) elegance, in one’s own words can be quite a thrill. It’s this thrill that keeps many writers shuffling words, long after any sane person would have given up.

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