Writing Tip

Not sure how to compose your first words? Be a good observer

Need inspiration for your CBC Nonfiction Prize submission? Finalist Ruth DyckFehderau says good writers are good observers.

The 2018 CBC Nonfiction Prize is open for submissions. Send us your original, unpublished work for a chance to win $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, a 10-day writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and have your work published on CBC Books. The deadline to enter is Feb. 28, 2018.

To inspire and support you along the way, we also post a writing tip each week on CBC Books. This tip is from Ruth DyckFehderau.

"Good writing comes down to careful observation and simple prose, to a writer paying close attention to involuntary movements and postures that reveal a person's state of mind or some other truth about a situation and then to articulating those observations in one uncluttered sentence after another."

Ruth DyckFehderau teaches creative writing and English literature at the University of Alberta for a few months of each year. The rest of the time she travels and writes. She is currently working on a novel and on a second nonfiction book with the James Bay Cree of northern Quebec. Her story Charity's Test made the longlist for the 2017 CBC Nonfiction Prize.

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