ON WRITING

John Rechy has conducted creative writing courses as guest author at Occidental College and UCLA.  He currently teaches in the Masters in Professional Writing Program at USC.  He also holds private workshops for professional-level writers.  He has lectured on writing and other subjects at Harvard, Yale, and Duke Universities.  From time to time, he will contribute short essays on writing.

The Three Terrible Rules. The three most often repeated "Rules of Writing," recited by rote and left uninvestigated and unchallenged in virtually every writing workshop, English course, and composition class, are capable of doing terrible damage to good writing.... More >>
The Buried Wisdom and Poetry in Time-Honored Clichés. Time honored clichés became clichés by adhering to no less than Alexander Pope's exhortation to writers to convey "what oft was thought but ne'er so well expressed." More >> 
A Dark and Stormy Night. That sentence, Edward Bulwer-Lytton's in "Paul Clifford," is often considered the worst opening of a novel. But what's so terrible? It makes a direct statement, identifies setting, and creates mood. More >>

First-Person Voice and Points of View. The first-person voice is one of the most needlessly nettlesome of all the narrative voices employed by writers, perhaps because "I" is the most used word in the language. More >>


1999-2006 John Rechy