Friday, February 23, 2007

Voltaire's voice

This quote by Voltaire is a fine metaphor for the writing voice (sent to me by Marilyn Olander).

"L'écriture est la peinture de la voix; plus elle est ressemblante, meilleure elle est."
"Writing is the painting of the voice; the closer the resemblance, the better it is."

- from Voltaire's "Orthography," in his Philosophical Dictionary

Monday, February 19, 2007

finding your voice

I'm interested in how writers find their voice. Here's an excerpt from a Critique magazine interview with Peter Elbow that I just came across:

"I want to emphasize something enormously simple about voice that in a sense I've only figured out in the last few years. If there's one activity that I think is the most helpful thing about writing, apart from just writing and writing, it is reading your writing out loud and also reading the writing of others out loud. Saying the words in your voice, with your mouth: I think that's the most powerful way to help one’s writing and to help one’s voice."
— Peter Elbow

Sunday, February 18, 2007

dirty work

I just learned that teaching is the dirtiest job. The findings come from the Clorox Company. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Teachers’ phones, keyboards, and computer mice had the most germs.

  • Accountants' desks had the most germs of any desks sampled.

  • Lawyers had the least germy desks.

  • Publicists had the least germy phones.

  • Bankers had the least germy keyboards.

  • TV producers had the least germy computer mice.

    "Surfaces regularly used by teachers, accountants, and bankers harbored nearly two to 20 times more bacteria per square inch when compared to other professions," the report states.

    Sources: The Clorox Company, “Office Germs Research 2006 Results.” News release, The Clorox Company.
  • Monday, February 05, 2007

    educational blogging

    A lot of teachers are using blogging in their classrooms now. Here's a link to a useful Educause article advocating educational blogging. It's a little dated, but still valid.

    Then today I came across an article from the Jan. 30, 2007 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education called Blog Overload. It's a good reminder not only about blogging, but about all writing. Good writing is purposeful and authentic.