Thursday, July 21, 2005

Wow, listen to him write!

My current vacation reading is Painted Paragraphs, by Donald Newlove, who sets out several choice examples of various authors' vivid writing in an effort to inspire we of lesser gifts. His publisher, I presume, gave the book its surtitle, "A Handbook for the Soul."

Here is Newlove:

"All my writing must come breathing out of me. In Painted Paragraphs I pass myself off as an expert on writing, since I think daily about writing, and my largest hardship is to get past facts into feelings and to stir you as I am stirred by the joy of finding my soul alive in other people and my refreshment in the works of fellow writers. The trick is never to write an unfelt word. I wake the dead. ... My inner ear listens to a voice within trying to wake me up. If I wake up, so will you."


The topic for another day will be how to write with such passion and still be true to the obligations of modern journalism. Comments, anyone?

If this sounds like something you just have to own, here's help at

1 comment:

ADH said...

He sounds interesting but I haven't read him. I might. I try to read people who are good writers, but I am wary of people who set themselves up as authorities on who is good and who isn't. My experience has been that "good" means "I like him" and "bad" means "I disagree with him." I find many of these people are literally unable to articulate why one is good and another is not. Does this guy actually advance evidence for his examples, or explain why some particular writer's style works?