Weekly Writing Quote

The written word
Should be clean as bone,
Clear as light,
Firm as stone.
Two words are not
As good as one.
  ~ Madeleine L’Engle

Thanks to No Excuses. Just Write. for the quote.



  1. noahthegreat said,

    February 12, 2009 at 10:56 am

    This is what sort of pisses me off about writing. My writing is usually very concise, so when I read it aloud at slams I lose points for it being so short. Especially when I revise. I usually cut the amount of words I used to half. I try not to waste any at all.

  2. desert rat said,

    February 13, 2009 at 12:44 am

    I’m sure Madeleine L’Engle would approve – as would many other successful authors. One of the tips that seems to recur in a lot of writerly advice is to cut out all the unnecessary stuff, and only leave the most important, most potent stuff behind. Why longer would be perceived as better in and of itself is beyond me.

    I have to say in your case, your approach certainly works with your poetry! I think with novel prose you can get away with more details and descriptive elements. William Gibson’s masterful use of detail in his cyberpunk novels is part of what gives them a startling sense of reality and presence, even when the plot itself is futuristic or fantastical. At the same time, there is never anything pointless or excessive in his writing either.

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