The Reader Over Your Shoulder: A Handbook for Writers of English Prose
THWACK! Down comes the headmaster's birch-rod on the sensitive knuckles of the bumbling pupil. Botch that passage again, lazybones, and I'll have your hide! Poet-novelist Robert Graves and historian Alan Hodge have written a delightful book containing a very quirky 126-page critical history of English prose, a few short chapters listing every conceivable principle of clear & graceful writing, followed by some 200 pages of the most carping, anal-retentive editing & revising you've ever seen. Unlike most style-book authors, who criticize hypothetical or anonymous examples of bad prose, Graves & Hodge courageously tackle many of the biggest names of their era (Hemingway, Aldous Huxley, Bernard Shaw) and relentlessly pick, pick, pick until the carcass is clean and the bones lie strewn about the lair. Then they put it back together again PROPERLY, the way the author should have done it the first time. As G&H themselves note, the book might as well be subtitled "A Short Cut to Unpopularity". Of course, if any headmaster ever treated me the way G&H treat their victims, I'd be outraged. Luckily, we are not one of their hapless victims suffering under their harsh tutelage; so, although we wince in sympathy with those being raked over the coals, we can also profit greatly from their chastisement. "The Reader Over Your Shoulder" is the most painstaking and explicit guide ever published on the craft of revising one's prose. Ideal for self-study. But beware: G&H get under your skin and stay there.
Specifications of The Reader Over Your Shoulder: A Handbook for Writers of English Prose
|Author||Robert Graves, Alan Hodge|
|Publisher||Random House Inc (T)|
|Number Of Pages||290|
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