adjective-less writing

Now that my blog is really truly dead–with hardly a single reader left–I have the impulse to post once again.

I woke up with a singular echo in my mind this morning: write an adjective-less paragraph. I tossed beneath my coverings, trying to ignore this command as well as my alarm clock. Finally, as I was in the washroom, it occurred to me how random, silly, and obviously oxymoronic the idea of adjective-less writing is. I was about to berate myself for being silly, random, indulging in inanities when it dawned on me that actually, the whole idea was just a sliver from a nightmarish sleep. Adjective-less writing is something I have in fact suggested to my students on occasion. Students for whom everything is “very happy,” “very good,” “nice” or “bad” tend to benefit from the suggestion. On the other hand, the anxiety which was caused by this dream was just a condensed and concentrated dose of the apprehension and disquiet that is routine and normal at our school.

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