Strunk and White (Macmillan 1979) sits on my desk and when I feel that I have been rambling both in thought and written word, I leaf through my copy’s browned pages. Three reminders from the chapter on Style:
And finally the advice to rewrite and revise.
I remind myself of these again and again, aware that I am prone to forget them. To write naturally, is perhaps to let one’s voice through because words bear the imprint of the writer’s soul. One of my colleagues gave a sound advice, and that was to religiously write just about five hundred words a day. I once formed the habit of getting up at three or four and churning out just about that length for my thesis. The same colleague likewise chided me for writing in a veiled manner, and that I was nowhere in my text. Clarity will always be a goal. I once envied someone for his crisp,consistent clarity and thought what a fine gift it was. That brand of clarity is like a cloudless day without wind, the world aware of the stupor it breathes. It was engaging, but almost brutal at times.
Tonight, I revisit Marquez’s stories and live in his characters’ universes before sleep.