Quills gathered together,
They struggle to compose a line,
Lo, in combined effort they can’t,
So they compose nine.
Discontent with their content,
They gather seventeen,
Present it to the world
As if it is a sight unseen.
Quills, biro’s, typewriters and exquisite paper,
Empty jargon, wasted ink, nothing but vapour.
If you can’t explain it in a line or two,
This business of words is not for you.
Simplicity is the reflection of an art mastered.
One needs to know when they have exceeded the limits of the narrative, when they have fed too much to the reader, disengaged their mind.
There is an etiquette to the use of words to conjure an image, inspire a thought or provoke an emotion.
Too much fodder will devalue the stock.
Using indistinguishable words to the layman is an exercise of ones ego, not of one’s skill. Use words to suit your audience.
The best writers can put more weight in one line than a mediocre writer can put into fifty.
We read five hundred page non fiction novels and take two or three point from them when the masters of words would leave you reaping rewards from a single passage for hundreds of years. Anyone who doubts this hasn’t read Plato, Socrates, Rumi, Khayyam and more or lately, even for hipsters, Gibran.
If you aspire to write, choose the material you read wisely. You wouldn’t fill your car with bad fuel because you don’t want to pay the hefty price of repairs, why then would you flood your mind with useless junk, tv, media and so on?
Practise distilling your work.
Keep a journal, that is where you flood the pages with ideas and rehearsed verse and prose. But when it comes time to write, find your topic and begin to filter out the unnecessary baggage. Leave people with something to think about, with things to imagine, engage their mind but don’t give them everything. Be like a woman seducing her prey, lure them in, tease, let them pant, break a sweat, fire up their brain cells and stop. Know when to stop.