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The music of your writing: Editor's Notes #146
June 04, 2013
Hello,

"The hills are live with the sound of music."
--Oscar Hammerstein II


In this issue:

1. The music of your writing
2. Tickled my funnybone
3. Interesting Web site

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1. The music of your writing
We all respond to rhythms. They literally move us. Arguably, the most easily felt rhythms belong to music. But language has rhythms, too. In fact, some deaf children learn to speak clearly when taught through music.

After music, poetry has the most recognizable rhythms. In my free course on writing verse for children, I tell students to dance their poems. If you can't dance it, there's probably a rhythm problem.

Most of us write prose and don't give much thought to rhythms. But excellent prose works with rhythms, too. They are easiest to hear when you read a passage aloud.

Patterns of stress and unstress join alliteration and assonance to draw the reader down a lazy summer stream or smash and crash, burn and bash through the text.

One client had an absurdly high readability score. The rhythmic quality of his writing saved his work from being completely incomprehensible to the average reader.

We are not all poets, but we can all read more poetry. We are not all poets, but we can all tune our ears to hear the rhythms around us. We are not all poets, but we can all pay some attention to the music of our own writing.

Your handling of rhythm provides the backdrop for your ideas. What sort of music best suits your writing today?



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2.Tickled my funnybone
From a church bulletin: "A bean supper will be held on Tuesday evening in the church hall. Music will follow."

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3. Interesting Web site
For tips on how to manipulate written rhythm see below.
http://grammar.about.com/od/rs/g/rhythmterm.htm

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