During 2013, dozens of talented writers are joining me to cheer you on in your storytelling. These guest-writers will share a few helpful words with you right here every Tuesday night, to encourage you as you #TellHisStory. (Come back after midnight to link up your God Story by clicking here.)
And now, I’m delighted to introduce you to my dear friend Megan Willome, a magazine managing editor from Texas.
I began to read aloud after I had kids. When they were babies, I read whatever I wanted (“Sense and Sensibility,” anyone?). Through elementary school, I read whatever they wanted. After they could read on their own, they stopped wanting me to read to them. That’s about the time I got a regular writing gig. Soon, my old habit of reading aloud was serving as the perfect editing tool.
Try it. Once your post or your poem or your essay or even your novel is done, read it aloud. Brew a pot of hot tea because your voice will get tired. Not only will you find words you omitted, not only will you find misspelled words that are actual words (“to” instead of “do”), but you will hear how your words sound. You’ll hear them flow — or not. Oops, you wrote the word “suddenly” twice in one paragraph. Or every paragraph starts the exact same way. Or you think, “That section really doesn’t advance the story the way I’d hoped.”
I need to read everything aloud at least twice. If it’s a big piece, I may read it more. And I still don’t catch everything, but I catch a lot.
Megan Willome is managing editor of the WACOAN, a monthly lifestyle magazine, where she is also a contributing writer and columnist. She lives in Fredericksburg, Texas, with her husband, two teens and two dogs. She blogs at meganwillome.com about poetry, tea and other things.
YOUR TURN: Go find a favorite story or poem that you’ve written from your archives, read it aloud, pat yourself on the back for a job well done, ( 🙂 ) then come back and drop us a link to some of your favorite words, right here in the comments!