Exercise Your Words Carefully
Words matter, don't you think?
Writing is an art that can be difficult, depending on what you are writing about & who you are writing for. Reading can be difficult, depending on how much the reader gets out of the writing and how much the writer actually put into the writing. But at the end of the day, words are what tells the stories of our lives.
So it got me thinking. Just how much do words really matter?
Let's try something. Read these sentences and concentrate on the emotions you feel as you move from word to word.
1. The hot fudge quickly melted the ice cream into a thick, rich chocolate milk slush. 2. Feel your ribcage melt into your spine and your sitting bones melt into your mat.3. Getting rid of sugar in her diet, she sat back and watched the pounds melt away. 4. She melted into his arms in a warm embrace. 5. Your puppy dog eyes melt my heart.
Now consider a similar word that has an almost similar meaning.
That's a pretty gross word. Most rational people will agree, don't you think?
Some lovely irrational yet politically poetic literary wonders seem to agree on the importance of words in our world. Here are just three of my favorite things to keep in mind when writing, reading and living.
I consider looseness with words no less of a defect than looseness of the bowels. ~ John Calvin
Be obscure clearly. ~ E.B. White
The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug. ~ Mark Twain
Be careful. Be creative. Be conscience of others.
Clear. Concise. Compelling.
Know your audience. Trust your audience. Trust yourself.
What other writing advice do you follow?