I’ve been thinking about this one for a long time. And I’ve been observing myself and others. Now I’m ready to share it:
I believe that we as writers have a keen ear to the sound of things. The sound of language. The sound of nature. The sound of life.
Maybe it’s not true. Maybe that’s just me. I would love to have that discussion in the comments, to be honest, because I’m really not sure if this is universal.
Anyway, what makes me like stories – and what I strive for in my own writing – is a good mix of sound and rhythm. To create a way of making words flow that is pleasing to the mind. To make my readers’ minds light up with joy at the flavor and color and sound of the language they are reading. (Plus the story itself, of course.)
Writing this here in the blog makes me feel like a nerd.
I’ve often called writing something like word-smithing, or painting pictures with words. And that’s still how I feel. It’s a craft as much as a passion. Our tools, our paint, our ingredients are words – and how they are put together. The part of our body that admires the result are not the hands wielding a good tool, nor the eyes who delight in a picture. In our case, it’s the mind.
So, as writers, we set out to please the mind, on many levels.
Which is, of course, not easy, because every reader has his or her own mind. So the best solution is to write for our very own mind, in the hopes that we can draw those readers to our books who enjoy what our mind enjoys. Makes sense?
So be authentic. Allow your love of sounds, rhythm and words to create the most beautiful piece of writing you can. Polish it. Edit it. Read it out loud. Revel in that feeling, that sound. And tweak it.
And well… I can’t stop myself from adding some tapping phrases for you guys. Because writing on that level is quite demanding.
Even though I feel as if I’ll never write that well, I’m okay the way I am and I’m open to the possibility that I can practice and improve my writing with everything I write.
Even though this whole idea of rhythm in writing feels strange and overwhelming, I’m okay the way I am and I now allow myself to test this idea and listen with my mind.
Even though it’s overwhelming to demand so much from my own writing, how will I ever get good enough, I’m okay the way I am and I now allow myself to be open to learning more every day.
Writing is truly a craft you have to practice to get really good. The one other thing that will help to improve your writing is being aware while you read. Feel that rhythm. Feel the sound of words, and feel the love that’s inside you for great language.
So. Is this idea totally idiotic or have you experienced something similar? Please comment.
Image source: F. Moebius
PS: If you need some help with that tapping, check out this video: What is this tapping? In it, I demonstrate how you tap on your body – just adjust the words to the ones I’m giving you here. If you want more support than this blog post can give, click here, send me an email and we’ll connect to see how I can help you best.
Hi, thanks for this interesting post. I agree with you that music and language are very close. That’s one of the reasons why nursery rhymes are so important to a child’s language development. (Sorry, once a speech therapist…)
When I edit my work, I like to read it out loud. It’s easier to hear any clunky phrases that way, and find a better mix of sentence length.
Thank you for the comment!
I’s funny, I worked five years in a university project about Language Acquisition – long ago. Young children definitely react to rhythm and rhyme, and they have a natural ability to recognize sounds. And I think they just love it. 🙂
When I edited my short story collection that’s coming out soon, I spent two days reading each of those stories out loud – I believe it’s one of the best edting methods around.