Skip to content Skip to footer

The Writer’s Diet


If you’d like to energize your writing and are eager to take the test I discussed above, you may want to take a look at the book The Writer’s Diet: A Guide to Fit Prose by Helen Sword. Sword specializes in enlivening the often monotonous, pompous, and dry world of academic writing, but writers of any genre might benefit from Sword’s “writer’s diet.”

She runs a website of the same name where you can find a test you can take (mentioned previously in the newsletter) to see if your writing is as lean as it can be.

In an interview with New Zealand journalist Dione Joseph, Sword states:

Good writing, like physical fitness, requires an input of high-quality ingredients (good food, good words) and a significant output of energy. The more time you spend editing and honing and polishing your writing, the more your readers will thank you.

Take a look at the complete interview about the book here.

Sword also wrote a terrific piece for the New York Time’s blog about what she likes to call zombie nouns. Intrigued? Read the article here to find out if your nouns are more undead than lively. Then, check out The Writer’s Diet and let me know what you think of it in the comments section below.

Leave a comment