Friday, June 27, 2008

Miscellany: The Writer's Art

I was at odds with my French teacher, Madame Youngman, for substantial portions of my high school career, but one thing we had in common was that we were both fans of "The Writer's Art," a column by James J. Kilpatrick.

The column is chock full of advice on what words to use and how to structure sentences for maximum impact. In doing so, it goes beyond mere grammar tips, although they do crop up from time to time. Kilpatrick usually excerpts bits and pieces from other newspaper columnists, either to lampoon or praise the nuances of their usage. If you've ever pondered the difference between "repetitive" and "repetitious," than you're probably someone who'll like reading Kilpatrick's thoughts on how to write sentences that slip smoothly through the mind.

While Mr. Kilpatrick is semi-retired, he's still writing both "The Writer's Art" and "Covering the Courts." You can read them online here at the Universal Press' website.


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