The Library Stack

Continuing my ongoing series, The Library Stack, sharing my latest stack of borrowed books from my beloved local public library.

Here is the latest stack:

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Everybody Writes (Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Ann Handley is my favorite book in the stack and I am reading it cover to cover.

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There are so many gems of wisdom on writing in this book, such as this one on sentence structure from page 25:

This is the first sentence of an introductory paragraph of a Center for Disease Control and Prevention style guide: “According to the National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL), released in 2006 by the U.S. Department of Education, 30 million adults struggle with basic reading tasks.”

The primary idea in that sentence is that millions of people are not fully literate; everything else in it is secondary.  The primary idea – the important words – should be placed at the beginning. So:

“Thirty million adults struggle with reading, according to the National Assessment of Adult Literacy….”

– Ann Hadley, Everybody Writes

What a difference between the original version of the sentence and the rewritten version of the same information by Ann Hadley! Ms. Hadley clearly demonstrates how improved and concise a sentence can be with all the fluff removed at the beginning.

This was a powerful example for me on thinking about sentence structure. I am fascinated by sentence structure and would like to spend more time in the future thoughtfully crafting sentences. Becoming a better writer is important to me. My goal is less cringe worthy moments when people read my blog (smile).

Ann Hadley references one of my other favorite books on writing, Stephen King’s On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft (2001). If you are an aspiring writer I highly recommend Stephen King’s book on writing. 

Perhaps after I finish this book the quality of my blog posts will improve. What the heck, I might even begin doing a better job proofreading my posts before publishing them. Maybe. But, don’t get your hopes up…

“Writing is easy, all you have to do is cross out the wrong words.” – Mark Twain


Postscript

Speaking of writing, on Wednesday evening my friend and I got to see writer and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Chabon speak at our library’s Author! Author! series.

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Image credit: deschuteslibrary.org

Now he is a true wordsmith and his sentences are beautifully and masterfully crafted. I recently finished his book Moonglow (2017) and it is one of my favorite memoir type of books (it is the story of his maternal grandfather as told to him by his grandfather as he was in his last stages of his battle with a terminal illness).

Mr. Chabon read a couple chapters from his book still in progress and those chapters were amazing. My friend and I sat in the front row and got to be “Literary Fan Girls”!

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No worries, we were well-behaved and did not throw our lace bookmarks at the stage or anything like that…

7 thoughts on “The Library Stack

  1. Cindy Anderson says:

    Quite the last thought to leave with your readers! Lace bookmarks…..hmmmm. Cute! I could totally see you doing something like that though. I enjoy your library book series. I learn so much without even having to go the library. Writing has always been something I have liked to do. Being a better writer is a goal I’m always trying to achieve. You have given me food for thought on books that I just might have to find. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Melanie McNeil says:

    I love King’s On Writing. Long long ago (maybe in high school, so we’re talkin’ decades…) I read several of his novels.

    Blog writing is a challenge and becoming more so for me all the time. I’m finding it difficult to create stories that interest me and tell new things about quilting. This is a subject about which I could go on and on. Just ask Jim… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • tierneycreates says:

      Well good thing you are an awesome blog writer, I feel like you succinctly get your points across in your writing. Hopefully some inspiration for new stories will hit you (gently, do not want you to be knocked over with a new story idea, ha!) 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. feistyfroggy says:

    I noticed right away that you left the 700’s! So proud of you! (Not that there’s anything wrong with the 700’s!). You are a funny girl and I love reading your posts!

    I love that you are always challenging yourself and how smart you are!

    Liked by 1 person

    • tierneycreates says:

      Thank you for the huge laugh! Yes I ventured outside of my beloved 700 section of the library – thanks for noticing 🙂
      I was thinking of you as I wandered the 300s and I tried to cheat to see what topic might be coming next on your blog as you read through the library!
      Thanks for your kind comments, you are very smart too!

      Liked by 1 person

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