Saturday, February 25, 2017

a song of its own

"Prior to becoming an author, I spent over twenty years working in the music business. Desmond Child, a songwriting mentor of mine, taught me that precision and economy of words create great impact, that rhythmic form makes art memorable. He was right. It might be difficult to recite a short passage of text from memory. But if a song plays on the radio---a song we haven't heard in years---why can we sing every single word? Rhythm and melody.

Rhythm and melody make prose memorable. I apply these musical principles to my writing. When I'm drafting a novel, I read my work aloud, listening for tempo and flow. If I stumble, I revise the sentence, pruning and subtracting until the melody is just right. Mind your rhythmic form.  If you do, the prose will live and breathe on the page, will linger in the reader's mind as a song of its own."

-Ruta Sepetys (
sharing her thoughts with the SCBWI Insight here.)

This is a wonderful reminder.  And one that I think this is true of illustration as well.

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