2 thoughts on “Test against the ear

  1. This applies to prose as well as poetry, but is so hard to actually do! It helps if someone sympathetic is willing to listen as this makes me feel less of a dork reading my own writing out loud to an empty room.

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    1. Haha. I know what you mean.

      I guess the unique thing with poetry is that music is essential, so if you don’t read your (and others’) poems aloud, you’ll never know whether they contain music—or develop a musical ear.

      But reading prose aloud is definitely helpful too, even if only to catch awkward sentences or things that don’t sound like you. C. S. Lewis advocated ‘hearing’ as you write:

      “Always write (and read) with the ear, not the eye. You should hear every sentence you write as if it was being read aloud or spoken. If it does not sound nice, try again.”

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