The five reasons Ernest Hemingway is celebrated and you aren’t, yet.

16 Mar

Hemingway was meticulous in the way he picked his words.

When you write, are you conscious of the words you elect to represent your ideas, or are you merely motivated by the natural cadence that forms when one word follows on from another?

Do you choose the simplest solution? The most elaborate?
The most minimal? The most evocative?
The most graceful? The most accurate?

Hemingway challenges us to exhibit restraint. To seek words pregnant with meaning. Even then, he encourages us to toss the majority away. For the rest of the week, I’d like to set you a challenge of my own.

Here are the five rules Hemingway enforced upon himself. Your task is to inject his minimal philosophy into everything you write for what’s left of the week. Maybe it will stick, perhaps it won’t, but you’ll be a better writer for the experience.

1. Use short sentences.

2. Use short first paragraphs.

3. Use vigorous English.

4. Be positive, not negative.

5. Try to put the shit in the wastebasket.


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