Janny Wurts, a very good fantasy writer, caught my attention when she mentioned he watched the woman walk away, MARIGOLD SKIRTS SWISHING.

I often think about that sentence. They may be two flowery for some works, but we, as writers, should be thinking about our prose. Janny’s words had a “purple prose” feel, meaning it was poetic, almost too pretty.

I, however, love the phrase and look to add flavor like that to my fantasy works. There is alliteration in that line. Watched the woman walk away. Look at the w’s and a’s. Consonant repetition is called consonance. (I know, that’s a DUH. But, until someone points it out to you, or explains it, it’s hard to grasp.) Marigold doesn’t add to the alliteration, but it gives us vivid color and imagery in a single word. Swishing skirts. S’s add more consonance, and the w in swishing draws the consonance from the first half of the sentence into the last part.

The phrase is just plain eloquent, the kind of thing that has mesmerized my thinking processes often. Did she know she had done that? Or does she have a natural knack for poetic prose, and not even know it? IS SHE A POET? Yes. She must be, even if she doesn’t realize it.

I’ll have to ask her if she intends to be poetic or if it simply happens as she writes. Not that it matters. I recommend her, if you’re a writer who struggles with active prose that has color and flavor. Read just one of her novels, or even several pages of one, and you will see what I’m talking about.

She doesn’t waste words. Use of WAS is minimal. She demonstrates active and rarely slips to passive writing. All in all, I believe she is a fine example of the type of writer we should aspire to be. You can learn a ton, and absorb a lot, just by reading her works. (And she didn’t pay me to say this! She doesn’t know me from Adam.)

To find Janny’s work, you can go directly to her website:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: