Posted by: Judy M. Goodman | October 26, 2009

Books A’Plenty

Twice again Writers Digest has published entertaining and useful books. Their 2007, A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words: image driven prompts and exercises for writers by Phillis Sexton – photos by Tricia Bateman and Bonnie Trenga’s 2006 The Curious Case of Misplaced Modifiers: How to Solve the Mysteries of Weak Writing.

Sexton structured A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words by which section of the story he designed the prompts to aid: beginnings, description, character, dialogue, emotions, ending, and story starters. Each chapter begins with an explanation as does each prompt. It will work even better to explode blockages and help with existing projects than as an idea mine. You’ll find tips on how to get the most out of each exercise in the introduction and later in the book. These are not ten minute prompts to begin a circle. The recommendation is to set a minimum length of 1000 words for each exercise (about two pages.)

According to the back cover of The Curious Case of Misplaced Modifiers, “Most people think that good grammar leads to good writing. But the truth is that while good writing may be technically correct, it’s also strong, concise, and specific.” Trenga identifies the seven writing weaknesses that editors [and today’s plethora of inept professional proofreaders] face the most. It’s written in a humorous mock police procedural style. Like Lynn Truss’ Eats Shoots and Leaves it’s a lively written adventure suitable for the grammar police as well as those of us who plague them.


  1. Thanks for the tip-offs, Judy!

  2. You’re welcome.

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