Thoroughly scrub clams under cold running water to remove grit.
Bring wine and broth or water to boil in skillet with close fitting lid (glass preferred). Add garlic, herbs and clams and cook a few minutes until the clams open. Don't overcook. The clams will not all open at the same time, be ready with tongs to fish out clams and plunk them into a serving bowl as soon as they open.
When clams are cooked, carefully decant the wine and herb broth into the serving bowl to leave any grit behind. Serve clams with broth and crusty bread for dipping.
While scrubbing, rattle the clams around in a bowl to flush out and discard any empties filled with mud. Substitute water in a pinch. Add anything that catches your fancy -- herbs, garlic, veggies, or sun-dried tomatoes. Serve with bread or pasta.