Random Toodles

March 26, 2011


I have eccentric kids. For example: I caught my son last night, staying up WAY past his bedtime, secretly reading a book under his covers. Guess what it was? Strong’s Concordance to the Bible.
In case you didn’t know, you could kill a dog with that book. It’s about 4 inches thick, weighs, what, 20 pounds. It’s a reference dictionary of every Greek and Hebrew word in the Bible. He said it’s “a worthy read.”

Gosh, I love my kids. lol.

I’m trying to become a better writer. I’m a freelance writer by profession. Oo it’s good to say that. I haven’t had a job in YEARS, and before then, I had a short career in radio, so it’s a warm fuzzy feeling to say that I am a professional writer. But I’m doing this for more than money– I want to become better at what I do. I’ve always been good with words, I’m practically a walking thesaurus… but being a writer is more than big words. So, I’m actively applying a few special writing tips from that amazing writer, C.S. Lewis. I’m smitten with him and Mark Twain. They were phenomenal writers– they used words in such a way that they grasp you by the shirt and wrest you headlong into their stories. C.S. Lewis gave some excellent advice to writers, especially two very special points which I hold very dear to my heart and try to practice– not necessarily because these two points are so magnificently poignant; they’re the the ones I happen to remember.

1. Do not make your reader work so hard to understand your point. Be clear in your meaning.

2. Instead of incorporating more descriptive adjectives and adverbs, use more descriptive verbs.

I’ve been working very hard at these two points. My articles may take longer to write because of it, but my scores have slowly crept upwards. I have now climbed from “excellent” to “proficient,” and I’m pleased as punch. Ah, but it’s still a ways up until I reach “superior.” Excelsior, my dear!

Oh, and case you’re wondering what inspiration Mark Twain has bestowed on me, it’s this:

I never let my schooling interfere with my education.

Bravo, Mr. Clemens.

His “Innocents Abroad” is a magnificent literary accomplishment. To their great delight, I read excerpts to the kids, a few years ago. I would love to travel the world and write such a work. It was Twain at his best!

I once read a quote by Sid Caesar who said that the funniest people in the world have had some of the most tragic lives. Humor was their means of getting through the hard times. Mark Twain had a difficult life, I wonder if that’s why he was so witty and entertaining and yet so melancholic and forlorn.

For the second time, I met IN PERSON someone who I met online.

One of my very rare photos online. So now Google knows what I look like. :-p

This just may become quite the habit, lol! Like with radio, blogging allows me to be a voice without a face. I always joke to my kids that my their dad heard me on my radio show long before he met me, and fell in love with my voice; and when he saw me, he married me, anyway. šŸ˜‰ I’m exaggerating– I don’t think I’m a hag with warts on her nose, but my voice is one of my finest features. So anyway, I like to be incognito when I blog, too. Meeting *real* people took a bit of courage, because I’m really not as social and outgoing as I am when I write. I’m kind of shy, quiet, a little wry. But I like meeting new people, I have found. Maybe I’ll meet YOU sometime! šŸ˜€


And you know what? I just remembered that some of you bloggers gave me a blog award a few weeks ago… and I never did anything!!!! Oh my word, I’m sorry!! I didn’t mean to ignore you. Oopsie, he he. I’ll get on it. šŸ˜³

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3 Responses to “Random Toodles”

  1. Karen, author of "My Funny Dad, Harry" Says:

    I have a Strong’s Concordance too! I took it to my Sunday School class to show the 5th grade boys and they were quite impressed! I like that quote from Mark Twain and thanks for the writing tip. I’ll have to try to think of some descriptive verbs! Can you give me a sample? Oh, so that’s what you look like! It’s about time you showed us!

  2. Rebecca Says:

    Hi Karen, sorry for my delayed response to your question.

    Substituting bland verbs for more descriptive verbs might be:

    walked = trod, plodded, bounced, slogged

    eat = devour, consume, nibble

    write = narrate, compose, scrawl

    Get it? šŸ˜€

    So instead of writing:

    “The mud stuck to my boots as I walked through the puddle.”

    You might write:

    “The slimy muck clung to my boots as I slogged through the puddle.”

    It’s just a bit more descriptive. lol Sometimes it can be overdone, but a few choice words in the right places make a big difference. I’m still trying to find the balance.

  3. Rena Says:

    I also have the Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible by James Strong. I bought it used off of ebay. It has some writing inside on the first page. It was a gift to someone back in 1943 I think it says. Yes it is very heavy! Thankfully it was free shipping!

    I had fun visiting you and your family. Playing Scattergories was fun!!
    Even though I lost every round… šŸ™‚