Heterographs and the art of reading

Glacier National Park

Glacier National Park

A recent post on Penguin’s Book Country espoused the benefit of reading. And I am in complete agreement. Hard to believe coming from a guy who in his youth read the bare minimum to keep scholastically alive and kicking. Now, however, as a writer, I am playing catch-up, and have a stack of books just waiting for me to open.

Of course, I did read something daily from the mid 1970s through the mid 2000’s – music, a different language using different symbols, but reading all the same. Helped with brain cognition and neural network formation, or so the smart people say. In my old crowd, the word “read” was usually referring to small-ish wooden slivers called “reeds.” As on online dictionary stated, read and reed  are actually “homophonic heterographs.” Try using that one at your next cocktail party. Okay, maybe not.

Anyway, with regard to reeds, a woodwind musician is on a neverending quest always looking to find the best one. With a great reed, a musician can produce a much better sound. A bad one can get you fired. And no one wants that. There are only so many jobs in the fast food industry.

For writers, a better “read” will only help them become a better writer. What constitutes such a good book? That’s the fun part, you don’t really know until you start reading!

Back to Book Country for a moment: I have been asked to read and comment on a draft of a historical novel set in mid-to-late 1800s Montana (hence the photo of Glacier Nat’l Park above.) The Ghost at Beaverhead Rock is a page-turner written by  Carol Buchanan. This book is well-researched and contains themes that could easily apply in today’s world. After all, greed and jealousy weren’t invented last week.

Because of my agreement to read the book, and comment – and because I am waaaay behind in my daily bible reading, I am taking my own advice and making this week a reading week. And by the way, in case your bible is still in your car, and your car is in the shop this week (who knew wheel bearings were so important?) you can always link to an online bible. I now have the Revised Standard Version linked on my favorites thanks to biblestudytools.com. This site has many translations and commentaries. If you are going to hang out online, this is not a bad place to spend time.

That’s it for now. Back to reading – unless the Nobel Committee calls. I hope they didn’t lose my phone number like last year.

Keep the ink well full.



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