Friday, July 22, 2016

Steering The Craft: One

Going into this exercise from Ursula K. Le Guin's Steering the Craft, I was a little dubious. I've been told my prose is a bit ornate, although this criticism is not consistent nor constant. So the idea of working the sound of language did not seem to be an expedient route to clarity and the millions, nay, thousands of millions of dollars waiting for me if I could just find a way to write the next 50 Shades of Gray

I am the type of person, however, that does find awkward wording by reading a paragraph aloud -- or at least under my breath, while I'm on the bus. Perhaps I should read this post aloud more.

So, going in, I was ambivalent, but the exercise itself was a lot of fun, even if only three of the six decided to actually post. That is an advantage of online forums -- one can always catch up. The examples in the book, which I will not share here, gave just a few ways one could play with the sound of language, but they were more than enough to be inspirational. Well, to me, at least.

As a result, I came out of the exercise a net positive and found myself trying to use the exercise as a warm up before I do any work on my stories or novels.

The discussion has been not as strong as I thought, with one basic dissertation on why they didn't like the book or the exercise, but at least they gave it a shot in the examples, and it was a fun example to read, and the perspective was helpful.

Not an auspicious start, becalmed at the beginning, but the ship moves on.

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