MORE NON-FICTION

WHEN I FIRST STARTED BLOGGING in 2016, I almost exclusively read novels. My friend, Deb Nance, the one who enticed me into blogging in the first place, almost exclusively read children’s books and for personal growth, non-fiction. As our friendship grew from acquaintances to almost-sisters over the years, she became enamored of good literary fiction, and I discovered that the writing in non-fiction could be as good and as beautiful as poetically-influenced novels. For the past two years, I have made a conscientious effort to read more non-fiction. My most recent attempt not only gave me enjoyment, but also gave me tips and techniques I could use in my Advanced Writing classes.

Described as a “Go-to-guide to creating ridiculously good content,” Handley’s book shed light on writing skills for business, marketing, personal writing, and academic writing, which I was most interested in. Part one of this well-organized handbook is titled, “How to Write Better (and How to Hate Writing Less).” The chapters I found most relevant to me were: “Shed High School Rules”; Organize, Relax, You’ve Got This”; Keep it Simple But Not Simplistic”; and “Break Some Grammar Rules (At Least These Five).”

Practically everyone can benefit from this interest-keeping book. Judge from the chapter titles, “Things Marketers Work With” and “Writing Better Blog Posts.” I admit that I skimmed some of this practical advice book, but the parts I read, I studied, taking notes so I could replicate the activities/discussions/lessons in my classroom.

Thanks Ann Handley for making my job more interesting.

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Author: Rae Longest

This year (2019) finds me with 50 plus years of teaching "under my belt." I have taught all levels from pre-K "(library lady" or "book lady"--volunteer) to juniors, seniors, and graduate students enrolled in my Advanced Writing class at the university where I have just completed 30 years. My first paying teaching job was junior high, and I spent 13 years with ages 12-13, the "difficult years." I had some of the "funnest" experiences with this age group. When I was no longer the "young, fun teacher," I taught in an elementary school setting before sixth graders went on to junior high, teaching language arts blocs, an assignment that was a "dream-fit" for me. After completing graduate school in my 40s, I went on to community college, then university teaching. Just as teaching is "in my blood," so is a passion for reading, writing, libraries, and everything bookish. This blog will be open to anyone who loves books, promotes literacy and wants to "come out and play."

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