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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Those 'key attributes' for good writing

“I always credited my mother with inspiring me to be a writer because she was such a passionate reader. She read poetry to me as a child. But rather late in life, I've come to appreciate my father, the accountant. He was a solid, organized, get-the-job-done kind of person-and you need that piece of it to be a writer, too.” – Judith Viorst

Viorst – a native of New Jersey born on this date in 1931 – is best known for her Children’s classic, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, written from the point of view of a 5-year-old boy and based on her own sons, Alexander, Anthony and Nick (the names of Alexander’s brothers in the story). To date the book has sold over 2 million copies and is around the globe in multiple languages.

In addition to several “Alexander” books, she’s also known for her “Lulu” series and the book The Tenth Good Thing About Barney.  All told, she’s written some 30 books, both fiction and nonfiction.  Her books for adults have often been related to her work as a psychoanalyst researcher.   Also a well-known newspaper columnist, she writes frequently for The New York Times and The Washington Post and has been a
contributing editor to Redbook.                                               

She once noted that she got steered toward writing in a unique fashion.   “My Girl Scout leader. … told me if I listened more and talked less, I could grow up to be a good writer. I thought that was interesting advice at age 12.”

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