Record Details

Catalog Search

First you write a sentence : the elements of reading, writing...and life / Joe Moran.

Moran, Joe, 1970- (author.).

Available copies

  • 1 of 2 copies available at LARL/NWRL Consortium.
  • 1 of 2 copies available at Lake Agassiz Regional Library. (Show preferred library)

Current holds

0 current holds with 2 total copies.

Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Detroit Lakes Public Library 808.042 MOR (Text) 33500013111612 New Checked out 08/27/2020
Detroit Lakes Public Library 808.042 MOR (Text) 33500013111620 New Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780143134343
  • ISBN: 0143134345
  • ISBN: 9780241978511
  • ISBN: 0241978513
  • Physical Description: 229 pages ; 21 cm
  • Publisher: [New York] : Penguin Books, 2019.

Content descriptions

General Note:
"First published in Great Britain by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House UK, 2018"--Title page verso.
Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references (pages 213-[219]) and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
A pedant' s apology, or why I wrote this book -- The ape that writes sentences, or why word order is (almost) everything -- Nouns versus verbs, or how to bring a sentence to life, but not too much -- Nothing like a windowpane, or how to say wondrous things with plain words -- The high-wire act, or how to write long and legato without running out of breath -- Foolish like a trout, or how to join sentences together with invisible thread -- A small, good thing, or why a sentence should be a gift to the world.
Summary, etc.:
"The sentence is the common ground where every writer walks. A good sentence can be written (and read) by anyone if we simply give it the gift of our time, and it is as close as most of us will get to making something truly beautiful. Using minimal technical terms and sources ranging from the Bible and Shakespeare to George Orwell and Maggie Nelson, as well as scientific studies of what can best fire the reader's mind, author Joe Moran shows how we can all write in a way that is clear, compelling and alive. Whether dealing with finding the ideal word, building a sentence, or constructing a paragraph, First You Write a Sentence informs by light example: much richer than a style guide, it can be read not only for instruction but for pleasure and delight. And along the way, it shows how good writing can help us notice the world, make ourselves known to others, and live more meaningful lives. It's an elegant gem in praise of the English sentence"-- Provided by publisher.

  • Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2019 July #1
    In this elegant and winding book-length love letter, English lecturer Moran professes his undying adoration for the structural atom of literature: the sentence. To Moran, every sentence is a gift from writer to reader, uniquely wrapped in length, rhythm, and style. Sentences do not work alone, they greet us as a team, all working together to support a larger mission. Moran uses examples from all walks of the written word in order to convey the importance of strong sentences, from the Bible to Maggie Nelson to Frank Sinatra. He explores the role of the sentence in music, history, and art; and outlines how sentence construction has physically evolved throughout time, from symbols in stone, to calligraphy, to typewriters, to modern touch-screen technology. The book is expansive, diving into myriad topics related to sentence composition and efficacy, and Moran's infatuation endures through it all. Writers and linguists have much to gain from Moran's manic and probing research, but it's Moran's enthusiasm for the vitality of language that will engage any and all readers. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

Author Notes

Joe Moran is a professor of English and Cultural History at Liverpool John Moores University.

Subject: English language > Sentences.
Creative writing.
Creative writing > Social aspects.
Creative writing.
Creative writing > Social aspects.
English language > Sentences.

Additional Resources