Writing

5 Reasons I Need to Listen Better

Over the past week, several people have said things to me that I haven’t wanted to hear, or at least not in the way they said it. An unhappy child whose anger came out in accusations. A museum guard who barked orders rather than politely explaining. Social media appeals that sounded a lot like judgment. […] Read more

Found Words: Begin Again

It’s back-to-school week in our community. And from the pictures on Facebook of squeaky clean kids wearing new clothes and backpacks stuffed to the brim, I’d say it’s back-to-school time in a lot of places. So much of the rhythm of our lives, whether we have children or not, depends on the last days of […] Read more

Word Work: Pronoun Agreement

Years ago during a brief stint as a graduate teaching assistant, I taught incoming freshmen how to write essays in an English 101 class. Except for actually having to grade 60 essays every time I gave an assignment, I actually enjoyed the position. Many of these new co-eds came to college full of ambition and […] Read more

5 Ways Words Say “I Care”

Words get a bad rap when it comes to showing people we care. The common mantra, “Don’t tell me you love me, show me!” encapsulates the idea that actions speak louder than words. In many cases, it’s true. If actions and words don’t line up, we generally trust a person’s actions. That’s not to say […] Read more

Word Work: Irony vs Coincidence

Recently, a friend and I were working on a collaborative writing project when I saw this note from her, highlighting the word “ironically” in my section. “I’d use coincidentally here, not ironically,” she wrote. I scratched my head. Clearly, they were different words with different meanings, but I had never realized that they could be […] Read more

5 Reasons to Write a Letter

Recently, I received a letter in the mail from a friend. She and I haven’t gotten together in person for several months, but a few weeks ago, I was thinking about her and decided to write her a letter. She wrote one back. Now it’s my turn again. In the meantime, she’s been getting my […] Read more

Found Words: We Struggle

Today, I am starting a new feature where I call back to you some of the words you have chosen this week, words that capture what’s going on in your life and provide a framework for moving ahead. True, these are someone else’s words for the week. But when I put them together, I find […] Read more