Thursday, March 08, 2007

Being an Intermediate Writer

Ever notice that most writing books are geared to new writers? And the really good classic reference books are geared to advanced writers? I've been looking for intermediate books for years, until suddenly, I realized something last night while reading William J. Blundell's The Art and Craft of Feature Writing.

What a book! If you have ever been curious how the Wall Street Journal writes such intriguing (at least I think so) business stories and how they come up with that imitable nut graf, Blundell's the one to tell you.

But, his range and scope of feature writing is so beyond mine, well, let's just say he's got a trick or two up his sleeve. Nowhere before have I seen insights like these. And I'm so intrigued, I stay up and read until past my bedtime. There are other books on writing that are advanced, as well, but I'd like to point out one thing about how an intermediate writer such as myself can utilize these advanced tomes to our advantage.

1. I don't have to use all of the advice right now. Later, as I write the five stories that have been assigned, I'll reread and pick up more.
2. I can just use one good thing (I call it the one true thing) that I've learned to good effect. That WSJ nut graph rocks MY world.
3. The thing with advanced writing books is that they make you feel inadequate. That's the wrong mindset, people. You must reach higher and farther than you've reached before if you're going to improve. You can't have things handed to you on a platter.

Thus, intermediate books should not exist, in my opinion, because what pulls a writer from new to intermediate is the realization that one must think for themselves. And that's writing.

Working on a ton of writing projects today. Hope you're writing too!

Keep at it!

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