ADVICE FOR WRITING
To a school girl in America from C.S. Lewis
- •Turn off the radio.
- •Always write (and read) with the ear, not the eye.You should hear every sentence you write as if it was being read aloud or spoken. If it does not sound nice, try again.
- •Write about what really interests you, whether it is real things or imaginary things, and nothing else.(Notice this means if you are interested only in writing you will have nothing to write about...)
- •Take great pains to be clear.Remember that though you start by knowing what you mean, the reader doesn't, and a single ill-chosen word may lead him to a total misunderstanding.
- •When you give up a bit of work don't throw it away.Put it in a drawer. It may come in useful later. Much of my best work, or what I think is my best, is the rewriting of things abandoned years earlier.
- •Don't use a typewriter.The noise will destroy your sense of rhythm, which still needs years of training.
- •Be sure to know the meaning (or meanings) of every word you use.