Monday, March 26, 2012

Hackers and Painters

Fellow Rocky Mountain Mystery Writers of America author Bonnie Ramthun pointed me to a book called Hackers and Painters by Paul Graham. Discussing computer programming and creative activities such as writing, it had some interesting observations for writers. One statement: programming consists of debugging, and writing consists of editing. A corollary is: good design is redesign. And as stated by E.B. White, “The best writing is rewriting.” The book includes a clear dictate to show rather than tell: instead of telling how things look, tell a story so well that readers envision the scene for themselves. Although this book is primarily about the world of computer programming, it has much to offer our world of writing.

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