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A writer needs three things:  experience, observation, imagination.
~~ William Faulkner

The calligraphy I so painstakingly lettered is faded but the message above, clipped to an industrial arts wood project my son gave me for Christmas when he was 11 years old, continues to guide my writing.

I’ve used this quote as a mantra of sorts for more than a decade, but find the statements Faulkner made just before and after these eight words equally important. He’d been asked how much of his writing was based on personal experience by Paris Review writer Jean Stein. (Read the interview.)

“I can’t say,” he responds, “I never counted up. Because ‘how much’ is not important.” After listing the easy-to-quote “experience, observation, and imagination,” he completes the thought:

A writer needs three things:  experience, observation, imagination—any two of which, at times any one of which—can supply the lack of the others.

I think those additional 17 words form a foundation for the freelance writer and editor.

Because I rely on observation and imagination as much as experience, I consider myself a generalist. I don’t necessarily specialize in one or two subject areas but use my research and interviewing skills to write friendly, informative pieces for a variety of audiences. I love to learn and have written everything from technical documentation and price proposals to newsletter articles, devotionals, personal profiles and essays for both regional and national publications. Click here to see a partial list of my publication credits.

Currently, I am Managing Editor and one of three senior editors for Literary Mama, and the Website Content Manager for my church


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