Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Unexpected Educator

James Walmsley didn't look like a teacher when he came my house to interview me for Omaha Magazine.  He looked young and intense, his dress style too casual to belong to a professor.

But when I read his article, "Marilyn Coffey: Not behaving like she should," I learned something about myself, about my writing, that I hadn't understood.

James wrote that I was known for my "ability to reconcile casual, everyday language with contextually strange words."

That jerked me. I knew that I'd developed a style that rested on casual language, and I knew I made frequent flurries into my thesaurus to find just the right word for what I wanted to say. But I'd never before thought of these words as "contextually strange." 

What an illuminating concept!

Thanks, Prof.  

To read what else James Walmsley wrote, go to