Friday, January 20, 2006

Writing Heart to Heart

I’ve been thinking a lot about writing this week. Part of that is because I’ve been hosting Book in a Week on two email loops. Part of it is because I’m giving an all day writing workshop on Sunday in Sunnyvale, CA.

We write to connect with other people. Any discussion of writing has to begin with that. What is it we most want to share and why is it important to us to do so? What is it we want the other person to know or understand or be able to imagine? How can we best connect so that we can achieve those goals?

Even if we are writing for ourselves, if we feel the need to put it in writing at all, it’s because we are trying to connect with some part of ourselves or understand something in a new way. Again, how can we best achieve that?

I’ll be talking about all of this in much greater detail on Sunday. A few quick thoughts, though, for all of you who are writers reading this.

¨ Who are you writing this for?
¨ What connects you—or could connect you—to these readers? (What do you have in common?)
¨ What tone will best accomplish your goals?
¨ What style will best accomplish your goals?
¨ What sentence and paragraph structure best suits each part of your story?

As I said, I’ll be talking about each of these things on Sunday in detail. I post these questions here because I know that we are far more likely to achieve our goals if we know what they are.

If all of this sounds intimidating, remember that a writer who connects heart to heart with readers will always win out over one who technically has better writing skills but lacks that heart.

Happy writing everyone!