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The Short Sentence


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From an essay in the NYT by Roy Peter Clark:

As a writer and teacher, I try to learn something about the craft every day. A gold coin of inspiration may come in my reading, in a conversation with another writer or even in the process of revising this essay.

I learned an important lesson, somewhat unwittingly, on July 19, 1975, while watching an interview with two of my favorite writers, William F. Buckley Jr. and Tom Wolfe. Mr. Wolfe was making fun of an art critic who had begun an essay with the sentence “Art and ideas are one.”

“Now, I must give him credit for this,” said Mr. Wolfe. “If you ever have a preposterous statement to make … say it in five words or less, because we’re always used to five-word sentences as being the gospel truth.”

The five-word sentence as the gospel truth.

The full essay is here:

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/09/07/the-short-sentence-as-gospel-truth/?ref=opinion

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