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Friday, April 20, 2012

Good Writing

H. W. F. Fowler

The title is misleading: I mean "perfect writing". I did not wish to frighten anyone away.
Perfect writing is possible; there is nothing I like better than writing things down as the magic bus ( the #4 - Midtown) of the mind goes flying by all the bus stops on Main Street, and I stand by the curb, feeling the breeze blow the fedora off my head, and feeling all giddy.

There is not a thing I like better, because I do not like going back and  straightening things out. As unpleasant as it is, things have to be re-arranged. All the things the mental wind blew at you have to be put in order and linked together: the more complex the thoughts which one tries to express, the more difficult it is, and the greater the chance that the amalgamating mind - which mixes and melds all into smooth imagery - lends a hand to the analytical mind - which takes things apart and puts them into the correct drawers - and what results is a bit of writing which is not quite ready to go out on its own, for there is too much left unsaid, and is clear to the writer, but can be ambiguous to the reader.

Once the process of cleaning and straightening is done, there are some incredible gems with a thousand  brilliant facets, and I look at them with amazement.

In High School, I spent a good deal of time reading H. W. F. Fowler's Modern English Usage and I discovered precision and clarity, and I was stunned by it all, so used had I become to lax and sloppy methods of speaking and writing. I truly felt that Marx was wrong, and it was Good Writing that was the opiate of the masses and the elites, for good writing leads us by the hand into an enchanted land, whether it be a land of fantasy or a land of science...
reality in writing is a succession of Schrodinger's Cats in a Borgesian chain of boxes: having opened the first box and putting things in order, we yet find another unresolved mystery of a boxy-type, and that mystery is the downfall of dogma and doctrine that try to force everything back into one box, for good writing seeks to open each following box and explicate the paradoxes in an unending chain of mentality!

I think Blessed Austin and Aquinas would agree, as well as Melville and Stapledon and H. G. Wells; that is why Writing Rulz!

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