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Virginia Woolf, on Rhythm
Looking to improve your writing? This is from a series of posts on rhythm in fiction. The first post is here.
Virginia Woolf, in a letter to a friend (at least, so I’m told)
Style is a very simple matter; it is all rhythm. Once you get that, you can't use the wrong words. But on the other hand, here I am sitting after half the morning, crammed with ideas, and visions, and so on, and can't dislodge them, for lack of the right rhythm. Now this is very profound, what rhythm is, and goes far deeper than words. A sight, an emotion, creates this wave in the mind, long before it makes words to fit it
The more I look for rhythm in writing, the more I find it and how central it is to the style of a piece. It also seems as if, while writers today almost never talk about rhythm, writers in the past had a great deal to say about it. We may have lost something over the last century in our focus on short, concise sentences with nary an unnecessary word.
If you are trying to improve your writing, join me. Subscribe. Comment. Share. It’s quite the voyage and you shouldn’t have to go it alone.
This topic is a rabbit hole that keeps twisting and deepening, maybe even leading to wonderland. This series of posts that explore rhythm began here:
For a sense of my fiction, check out the first chapter of my novella here, posted as a preview: