Cover Photo: This picture shows someone holding up to a magnifying glass filled with smoke. The smoke becomes pink and magical looking through the magnifying glass.
Photograph by Saffu/Unsplash

Make it Sharper, Make it Stranger

Simon Han shares an exercise to help make your sentences stronger and more surprising during the revision process.


  1. By memory


  1. Not bad, but something’s missing.

Simon Han is the author of Nights When Nothing Happened (Riverhead Books, 2020). His short stories, flash fiction, and essays have appeared in The Atlantic, The Iowa Review, Guernica, Electric Literature, and the Texas Observer. He's received awards from the MacDowell Colony, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, the Tulsa Artist Fellowship, and Vanderbilt University, where he earned his MFA. He has most recently taught at the University of Tulsa and the Sewanee Young Writers' Conference.