Even though I haven’t lived in New York for six years (Sheesh! It doesn’t feel like it’s been that long, but I guess it has been awhile.), I still subscribe to the The New York Times. Reading it is one of my favorite Sunday activities.
I usually start my reading with the Sunday Review section. I’m a big Maureen Dowd fan so I always peek to the second to last page to see if she has an op-ed. However, lately, I’ve been reading the Draft Series first.
You may’ve seen me post links to some of the Draft Series posts on the TWT Facebook page. Here’s what the Draft Series is about:
Draft features essays by grammarians, historians, linguists, journalists, novelists and others on the art of writing — from the comma to the tweet to the novel — and why a well-crafted sentence matters more than ever in the digital age (Retrieved on 9/22/13 from http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/category/draft/.)
Every week, I find myself learning something new about writing from the series’ contributors who become my writing teachers. I’m inspired to try something new or to step out of my comfort zone as a writer (even if I only try something out on the pages of my notebook) as a result of reading the Draft series. Some recent Draft pieces that have stretched me as a writer are:
- “Don’t Ask What I’m Writing” by Mark Slouka
- “How to Listen” by Lee Gutkind
- “Should We Write What We Know?” by Ben Yagoda
- “The Art of Being Still” by Silas House
- “The Essay, An Exercise in Doubt” by Phillip Lopate
- “The Role of a Dictionary” by David Skinner
- “The Short Sentence as Gospel Truth” by Roy Peter Clark
- “Time to Write? Go Outside” by Carol Kaufman
As teachers of writing, I’ll bet this is a series you’re going to want to check out each week! Many of the essays can even be excerpted in minilessons you teach to your students!