Aloud

Something wonderful happens when you read your writing aloud.

I thought the passage was as close to perfection as I could make it. I had spent almost a month on it, revising relentlessly until it gleamed. I thought I fixed all the spelling and punctuation errors, too.

Then I read it aloud to my writers group, in the first line, I found something that wasn’t quite right. I noticed other errors and wobbly passages that were hard to say.

At the end of my reading, I heard a few seconds of silence. The group liked what they heard. I found that what they heard wasn’t completely what I wrote, but me correcting myself as I went along.

I ended up with was a piece that flowed better. I not only caught errors. I found a hidden musicality in the prose.

John Steinbeck used to read all his works aloud before he sent them to his publisher. Before he became famous he’d have parties and invite friends. Later, he’d read to himself.

Try it.

 

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