Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Writing { and reading and publishing } ~

‘The Loneliest Place for a Writer’: Gary Lutz on Writing (and Rewriting) Great Sentences


For readers—is today’s re-blog just a bunch of fancy talk?

For writers—is today’s re-blog only one particular view-point?

For anyone—is what follows interesting?

Longreads

Early this summer I attended a disappointing writing workshop where a clearly unprepared instructor stressed the importance of creating air-tight sentences without bothering to suggest how. “Interrogate each one of your sentences,” she kept saying, then referring, over and over, to the first five lines of Lolita.

While the overall experience was unsatisfying, it reminded me that for a long time I have been wanting to go further with my development as a writer, at the sentence level. Since then, everywhere I’ve turned there have been signs pointing me in that direction.

Almost daily in the New York Times, ads for the Building Great Sentences audio and video offering from The Great Courses catch my eye. (Recently I ordered the corresponding book.)

More notably, not long ago, two different colleagues independently mentioned “The Sentence is a Lonely Place,” this instructive essay by Gary Lutz that appeared…

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