What Goes Around

I want to step aside from the inexorable (I hope) progress toward publication of Fatal Score for today’s post.

 I’m reading a fine book on the history of writing, The Written Word: The Power of Stories to Shape People, History and Civilization, by Martin Puchner.  It has all sorts of fascinating facts, but what struck me today was his reminder that the great thinkers of the early age of literacy didn’t write things down. Socrates needed Plato; Jesus, the Disciples; Confucius and the Buddha, followers and students.  In particular, Plato has Socrates complaining (Puchner’s words): “You couldn’t ask a piece of writing follow-up questions; words would be taken out of context in which they were spoken.”  To hear is authentic; writing is a pale counterfeit of the thought behind the words to Socrates.

Interesting, then, that the standout growth segment of a slow-growing publishing market is audiobooks.  Maybe what goes around does, indeed, come around.

Check out the first chapter of the Fatal Score audiobook here.

Long words

My critique groups often lean on me for using bigger words than necessary. Particularly people who read and adore Hemingway. My weak defense is accuracy: I want the reader to get an exact picture. The response is, “in well-written work, sixty percent of the reader’s vision is what the author wrote; forty percent is drawn from the reader’s own experience.” Now with several years and more than several rewrites under my belt, I understand.

So who had the twisted sense of humor to give an exact definition of ‘fear of long words’ as hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia?