Greetings from the Writing Wizard! Continuing the thread of posts related to minimal language, maximal impact, today we’re going to talk about two editing strategies that may help you in your travels through the worlds of homework, papers, admissions essays, cover letters, etc.
Both originate in popular culture, although I can only definitively cite the source of the first strategy. This is called the “Reverend Maclean” and it comes to us from Norman Maclean’s beautiful book A River Runs through It, which was later made into an award-winning film directed by Robert Redford and starring Brad Pitt. In both text and movie, the story concerns a young Norman Maclean, home-schooled by his Presbyterian minister father, growing up at the dawn of the twentieth century in Missoula, Montana with his bad apple of a brother, Paul.