“I don’t know [expletive] about words. The reason the language comes out that way is, it’s me just trying to get out of the way.” This provocative quote from Irish playwright Enda Kenny (from a recent Washington Post article by Peter Marks) speaks to an important concept that I am continually stressing to students. Writing is about ideas; words serve the story. Too much writing instruction and critique-group feedback focus on the superficial level of the sentences. A fiction writer who is too conscious about constructing beautiful or clever sentences puts his/her mind into the inkwell of pen, instead of into the heart/mind/soul of the character, which is where it needs to reside in order to write a story.