Learning to Write from Don’t Waste Your Life

Who would have thought that John Piper’s book Don’t Waste Your Life could teach one how to write? I didn’t, so when I picked it up, thinking it’d be good reading material (and I had seen the title on The Rebelution), I was surprised to find that I could learn to write from it.

The first thing that jumped out at me was on page 32.

Glorify is like the word beautify. But beautify usually means “make something more beautiful than it is,” improve its beauty. That is emphatically not what we mean by glorify in relation to God.

Next paragraph:

It is more like the word magnify.

My first thought? Why even mention ‘beautify’ then? It seemed almost like he was thinking on paper. How can a word be like another word when it is “emphatically not what we mean”? Piper continues with his explanation of why it is like ‘magnify’ and it makes sense. However, he never uses the word ‘beautify’ again. This might throw some readers for a loop, thinking that he’s talking about something totally different now. I believe what Piper meant was to then use ‘magnify’ as a synonym, but perhaps using ‘beautify’ at least once more could have tied it up better.

Other than that, what I have read so far is fairly well-written — except for the over-explanation of some things. I tend to over-explain some things myself, so it’s a good reminder that I might, just might, bore my readers with trying in so many ways to get them to see my point. Write it once effectively and leave it at that.

In other news: This weekend is archery camp. Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon we’ll be spending most of our hours at the archery club. Today has been a little rough for me. But we picked strawberries. We received No Greater Joy today. Seems to have a lot of good articles, many of which I’ll probably write about now. I should be writing Gentle Waves. I need to get it finished so I have some time to plan my NaNoWriMo novel.

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~ by neverxxforsaken on June 25, 2009.

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