Canada Writes·Writing Tip

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

Ruth DyckFehderau says good writers are good observers.

This writing 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 Dyck Fehderau 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.