Here at FFA HQ, we receive literally tens of fawning fan letters every quarter (approximately). Sometimes our kindly members dip their quills into the inkwell of writerly wisdom to help smooth the unsightly frown lines of ruffled writers seeking recherché recommendations on rhetoric. Such wisdom-seeds are then sewn into our Pearls of Wisdom section to benefit the advice-starved writing masses.

Dear Ms Thatch,

I am, quite simply, your biggest fan. I await delivery of your stories with breathless anticipation (I live on an isolated country estate and our postman has a terrible sense of direction and an intermittently reliable bicycle, so my dedication to your work is evidenced by how long I often have to wait for it). As an amateur writer (Nordic romance is my preferred sub-genre), I would be honoured if you could reveal how you write such flawless and enticing prose.

Yours in admiration,

Lady Penelope Le Moat

Dearest Penelope,

I suspect you will not be surprised to discover that you are far from the first budding authoress who, longing to emerge in bounteous writerly bloom, has rapidly reached a tremulous quill in my direction in a quest to query the crux of my craft. Welcome.

The secret, Penelope, is simple, and I fondly (and rather cleverly, if one may be so candidly self-congratulatory) refer to it as The Titillating Trifecta: alliteration, adjectives, and adverbs. Pepper your prose with these particular properties, Penelope, and it will become a positively phosphorescent shade of purple: a conspicuous and compelling clue of quality.

Of course, having never been an ‘amateur’ at anything myself, my advice might be too advanced for you to implement immediately, and Nordic romance is an area with which I feel content about retaining my current condition of non-familiarity.

(I also suspect that your postman has fabricated those details about his geographical and transportational capabilities and is, in fact, keeping my stories for himself. It would not be the first time.)

Yours in whimsical wordplay,

Tuesday Thatch
BA MA GradDip Cert IV Small Business Management

About the Author

Tuesday Thatch BA MA Grad Dip Cert IV Small Business (pending) wants you to be quiet in the stacks; she has ways of making you not talk. A former academic librarian with a penchant for pince-nez and a plethora of as-yet-unpublished publications to her name, Ms Thatch enjoys tweed skirts, twinsets, and the tactile pleasures of thumbing vigorously through a volume of purposefully chosen prose.

She derives intense satisfaction from assisting helpless male academics find exactly what they need from between her well-stacked shelves. Her hobbies include touch typing, watercolour painting, and exploring the rich intricacies of the Dewey Decimal Classification System. 

She is also the tweed clad alter-ego of Carody Culver, who resides in digital form at www.carodyculver.com.