06 February 2009

Scribo, Scribere, Scripsi

He writes, but his sentences are beyond complicated. The subjects and verbs are divided by miles of adverbial clauses. There are too many dependent clauses and they leave me searching for a simple meaning that I know, for sure, is there.

There is this question. Can you teach someone how to write? Can you help undo years of mistaken words, banal phrases, and poor grammatical constructions? Can Strunk and White, The Chicago Manual of Style and a copy of the MLA Writer's Guide save someone? (Can it save me?)

Recently, and only recently, have I decided the following: I am a writer.

Sure, my prose can be frustrating, plaintive or problematic; it can be lacking in focus, tangled and confusing, or just plain awful; nevertheless, I continue to write. A lot of people do, but a lot more of them don't. There are writers (even of blogs) I miss reading. I just liked the way that they wrote--imperfections and all. But like all things, I imagine that blogs will go the way of the dinosaur, and when they do, I'll write somewhere else. I'll fill an electric tablet with my unread musings.

Why do I write? Why do I write this blog? Who knows? Who cares? I just do it.

I wrote a great letter the other day. I could spend my whole life writing letters like those. Perhaps one day, I'll write a letter to you, but don't hold your breath. I'm lazy.

So, yes. Here, I have finally declared myself a writer and I now must deal with the consequences of that declaration.


Casey said...

I never found your writing difficult, or at least not in an unpleasant way. I'm glad you write, and I always like to see your blog in bold in my reader.

Jenni said...

I look to you as the "Dalai Lama" of grammar.

I on the other hand, am more like the "Tanya Harding" of grammar. I beat it to death with a tire iron, and then when it's down I kick it and take it's first place trophy.

What is a adverbial clause again?

For shame.

Jenni said...

I meant "an adverbial clause."

See...Told ya so.