Editor’s note: This month, we bring you brief reminders from pros around the world about what or who helped them forward in their careers.

[dcI[/dc] am thankful for William Zinsser’s book “On Writing Well.’ I read the book in one long day as a temporary receptionist and immediately started reading it again. I think I learned more about writing in that one day than I did in any of my college classes.

I am thankful for Alice Adams’ ABDCE formula, which stands for “action, background, development, climax, ending.” I think that I’ve used that formula, either on purpose or by accident, for nearly every article I’ve ever written.

I am thankful for computers and word processing. With my poor spelling, terrible typing skills, and indecipherable handwriting, I’m not sure I could have ever become a writer without the ability to make changes easily and cleanly.

I am thankful for fountain pens. Before I used one, I got hand cramps frequently. (But I am even more grateful for keyboards, and that I finally became proficient at using one.)

And finally, I am thankful for friends who are writers and writers who are friends. Whether by email, by phone, or in person, it’s wonderful to have companionship in this work.

Madeline Bodin ~ freelance writer

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