Hidden Value

The Writer’s Chronicle – October/November 2012



The Writer’s Chronicle is a writer’s magazine, but its emphasis is articles and interviews that most closely align themselves with what’s covered in academic writing classes. You’ve herd enough from me by now to realize that, while I’ve been in those collegiate show-and-tells, I’m not the sort to rise to prominence from that frame of reference.

Still, there’s plenty to provoke the thoughtful writer’s thinking process, there are always things to learn from academe. This issue, while focused for the most part on poetry. But before I go there, a few tidbits on this issues poetics. Poet Ruth Forman has a good say on the subject, who values the classroom. Edward Hirsch, too, but in a different manner – that of drawing from the structures of ancient poets and their cultures’ histories. And Margueritte Murphy, in her essay, “The Prose Poem as a modernist Genre,” helps writers of all sorts make sense of the increasing multidimensionality that modernist poets perceive.

Perhaps most useful to the journeyman writer is Richard Goodman’s article, “In the Beginning: Creating Dynamic, Meaningful, and Compelling Openings.” Here, Goodman relieves our minds that novels don’t always have to begin with six guns blazing and get more intense from there. He gives example after example of how characters, settings, facts, and stories can be melded, even in the opening paragraph, to draw – and keep – the readers’ interest.

Not my favorite issue, but, I wrote above, it’s always a good “go-to” source when one encounters writing problems. I sometimes cut out and save articles, as do at least two writer friends of mine. Can you say that much about yours?





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