David H. Jensen, who teaches at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, has written a very kind review of Writing Theology Well: A Rhetoric for Theological and Biblical Writers, by Lucretia B. Yaghjian.
Designed for students, this appealing volume offers the most comprehensive guide to theological writing currently available. Because theology and biblical studies are not often heralded for elegant—or clear—writing, the sheer appearance of this book should be celebrated. Yaghjian begins by introducing students to different genres in theological traditions, allowing readers to travel with giants such as Teresa and Augustine as writers. From this introduction flows a survey of argument, rhetoric, and the kinds of writing that students need to engage in theological study. More than offering scattered writing tips, this section of the volume invites students to the process of writing persuasively across traditions. The second section of the book offers helpful frameworks for pursuing theological and exegetical research. Of enormous help in this section are the pages on documentation of sources and avoiding plagiarism. The final part of the book encourages students to write with an eye toward a style of their own, by introducing analogy, metaphor, and symbol as anchors for the theological imagination. Toward that end, each chapter contains writing exercises for students to engage their writing voice. Because Yaghjian attends to the varieties of good writing, students will emerge not with a monolithic writing method, but with encouragement to pursue the discipline of writing in their contexts. If professors of theology "read this book over their students’ shoulders," perhaps even their craft will be enriched.
This review appears in Religious Studies Review, Volume 33 Issue 2 Page 124-124, April 2007.
I personally find this book very helpful and recommend it to all theological and biblical writers, whether I'm their editor or not. Yaghjian offers eight questions for consideration when approaching a writing assignment to fine tune the author's intent, focus, subject, and among other things, style. She also incorporates the long-marginalized voice of women's theological writing, as well. Keep this book close to your Strunk and White.