Saturday, February 9, 2013

Good Writing Advice

Lee Goldberg here...I found an excellent piece of writing advice in Randy Boyagoda's 2011  New York Times review of Charlies Frazier's novel Nightwoods.
It’s too bad the writing gets in the way of the storytelling — or, to be truer to Frazier, it’s plangently unfortunate the writing style gets all up and troublesome-like in the whisper-leaved way of the true and fine telling of this terrible and valiant tale of priapic violence and distaff recompense. A little girl doesn’t hurt her nose, she “pierced the wing of her nostril.” Bottles don’t spill or break, they are left “shattering with spewing concussion” and falling “in festive breakage.” Furniture doesn’t just age with time and use, but instead is “buffed to a pale silver nub by many decades of buttocks.” Writing that invites this much attention, that so strives to concentrate our attention on its effects, has to achieve more than precious and overwrought evocation.
That's so true. If you're a writer, that's advice worth remembering.

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