The only How-to-Write book that has nothing to do with writing. It’s all about rewriting. Whittle away what buries the art of your words beneath pulp, no matter the topic, no matter the genre.
There is more to writing than putting many words to paper and more to rewriting than rearranging those words. Writing a thousand words a day won’t help unless you know what to do with those words.
Mark Twain said. “The time to begin writing an article (anything) is when you have finished it to your satisfaction. By that time you begin to clearly and logically perceive what it is you really want to say.”
The Rewritten Word asks exactly that; start this short handbook with an article or chapter that you feel is finished. This cultivates an understanding of what the rewriting craft is all about.
Aggie Villanueva teaches by example. No long boring tome, The Rewritten Word’s five lesson unite clarity and brevity into a marriage to sculpt your words into literary art.
Why is producing literary art so important? Because of The Reader. Everything is for The Reader. One sentence of verbose rambling can drive him away. Readers are not only intelligent, but busy. Too busy to read 500 words when 200 would say it.
Some complain this busy lifestyle shackles the artistic bard. On the contrary, it demands writers take the time to polish work to precise perfection. This crafting of every word creates literary art. It demands less of the readers’ time, much more of our own.
The rewriting craft is like the familiar story where a city dweller admires the realistic horse carved by a man from the hills. The woodcarver waved away the compliments, explaining, “Shucks, I saw a horse in that piece of wood. All I did was cut away everything that ain’t a horse.”
The piece of wood was natural and pure, like raw talent, but it was just a piece of wood until the woodcarver took a knife to it. Only after he labored over it was it a piece of art. It’s the same with writing.
Yes, we’re given natural talent, that is, the ability to see a manuscript where none exists. But when we get this inspiration down on paper, it’s only a piece of wood. We must labor over it, cutting away what ain’t a horse.
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