Today's notes are from a session on writing the personal essay:
Think longer before you begin writing.
Don't "wind up" on the page. Know what you want to write first.
Periods don't cost money.
Unfold the story like dealing a deck of cards; turn over only one at a time.
End a sentence with the most powerful word.
Think of scenes in terms of visual frames; what image next? Next?
It's not that interesting for the reader to hear what the writer doesn't know.
Write as you'd talk, only say less.
Trust the reader to get it.
- Joyce Maynard, author of the new novel Labor Day, and of this past Sunday's
Modern Love column in the New York Times
You can read the first and second installments here.