Dinty W. Moore’s 10 Rules for Essayists

November 23, 2018 § 11 Comments

author photoThe following rules may or may not be based on Jonathan Franzen’s Ten Rules for Novelists, but life is a mystery, and art doubly so.

Dinty W. Moore’s 10 Rules for Essayists

The reader is a friend, literally, because who else is going to read your work?

Essays in which the author does not grapple with the lingering effects of family trauma are probably just about food or possums.

Never use the word fleet as a conjunction—we have flotilla for this purpose. Substituting fleet is the lazy or tone-deaf writer’s non-solution to the problem of too many flotillae on the page.

Writing in third person is just weird.

When information becomes free and universally accessible, we will spend the rest of our lives mindlessly clicking “like” on Twitter.

Purely autobiographical essays require either a moth, a hammer, or a lame horse.

You see more looking out a window than staring down into a caramel macchiato.

It’s doubtful that anyone with an Internet connection at his workplace is not being observed by the NSA.

Interesting verbs seldom intensify, intertwine, shimmer, or transmogrify your writing prowess.

It is easy to forget.

Dinty W. Moore was born, did a bunch of things, wrote a few books, and now finds himself pursued by polar bears.

§ 11 Responses to Dinty W. Moore’s 10 Rules for Essayists

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