I agree with all those habits, but would add another to make a baker’s dozen. It is the one that I most frequently tell folks who ask me how they can get published:
Don’t write to get published. Write because you must. Twisting Jer. 20:9 to serve my purposes, write because you can’t hold it in!
12 Habits of Writers
Walter Brueggemann is one of the greatest living biblical scholars. I don’t always agree with him, but he always makes me think.
Check this out at www.walterbrueggemann.com: He wrote 53 books by the typical retirement age of 65 and another 78 books from age 65 to now at 86 on this his birthday!
I recently read McEntyre’s Make a List which was terrific. I have been wanting to read Caring for Words in a Culture of Lies for some time and finally got around to it. It did not disappoint.
This book will inspire you to see the beauty and power of well-crafted words.
Not that this was the author’s explicit purpose, but it helps us read Scripture more carefully.
If you scroll down to the post for Dec. 19, 2018 you will see a heavily annotated copy of Finnegans Wake. My friend and regular reader of this blog, Dr. Dave McCoy, made a comment about his own copy of Finnegans Wake. I asked Dave to send me a picture and he has.
I love looking at the marginalia people put in their books and Bibles so enjoy a real pro at work here. And make sure to click the picture to enlarge it!:
When I spoke at Wheaton College I paid a visit to the Wade collection. It houses collections from the libraries of C.S. Lewis and many others. I asked to see a few of the books that were in the library of C.S. Lewis. The curator made the decision, but to my delight she brought up a copy of one of my favorites: Paradise Lost by Milton. I could not believe how many notes Lewis made in the margins, all in his meticulous penmanship. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to take a picture.
The picture you see is a Latin text where you can see the written notes of Lewis at the bottom in both Latin and Greek.
Lesson learned: If a scholar like Lewis finds it helpful to write in books, what does that mean for the rest of us?!
Picture: HT Timothy Willard’s Instagram account
Marilyn McEntyre is a gifted wordsmith. She is also a keen observer of the grand and the obscure. This book showcases both those things.
McEntyre shows how slowing down and doing something as simple as making a list can lead to profound discoveries about one’s self, others, and the world one lives in.
A delightful book!
Mary Beard’s book on Roman History is terrific. SPQR is the famous Roman catchphrase Senatus Populus Que Romanus or The Senate and People of Rome. If you know anything about Mary Beard (perhaps via BBC specials) you know this Cambridge professor is as feisty as she is brilliant. Her writing is magnificent. She knows how to tell the stories of ancient Rome in a way that are accessible and entertaining.
Some who are able to spin a good yarn are not careful with the details. Beard goes no further than the evidence will allow for telling this story. In other words, she does not traffic in speculation or try to fill in details we would love to have, but simply do not.
She does include details that make the story interesting throughout, but these are details we can be pretty confident of. For example, did you know that ancient Rome had one million inhabitants and that no city would have that many people until the nineteenth century?
Ancient Roman history is extremely relevant to the hurly-burly of twenty-first century America.
As one who writes on just about any scrap of paper that can be found, and I have used have many types, I appreciate this very much.
HT: Alan Jacobs
Artists need pockets