Diane Les Becquets

- Faculty, On Campus and Online

 
LesBecquets_Dianne
Listen twice as much as you talk, and read twice as much as you write
 
 

Prof. Diane Les Becquets, director of SNHU’s creative writing program, tells her students that writing demands tenacity, an ear for language and intuitive astuteness.

“I tell my students what you hear in childhood: ‘You have two ears and one mouth. You should listen twice as much as you talk, and read twice as much as you write,’” says Les Becquets, who also is associate director of the university’s M.F.A. in fiction and nonfiction writing.

Les Becquets, a PEN American Fellowship recipient who has authored three award-winning novels and numerous nonfiction essays, practices what she preaches.

 Every year, she travels to a remote area, spends a week or so alone and, afterwards, writes about the experience.

During her most recent trip, she camped on a ridge in the Dominguez and Escalante canyons in Colorado, a wilderness accommodation she shared with bears, mountain lions and coyotes.

“I was hiking at night and I could see tracks,” she says.

Holding a piece of Precambrian rock she found, Les Becquets contemplated “the basement rock” of herself.

“I was sitting by my campfire, the stars above, imagining the foundation rock of myself,” she remembers. ‘How do I remain solid within myself? What forms the core of my being?’”

In classes, Les Becquets uses what she learned to illustrate the writing process.

“Focus on concrete raw details,” she urges. “Chip away all the excess.”

She also insists that writers tell the “emotional truth.”

“I want them to discover the hidden depths, not surf the surface of existence,” she says.

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