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Factual Writing Evaluation (improved)


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Factual Writing Evaluation (improved)

  1. 1. Fanzine
  2. 2. (first draft)
  3. 3. For the first draft of my fanzine I mostly wrote in a more formal evaluative style. Fanzines are typically written in a chatty style rather than formal. They are written by fans, for fans, so there is no need to write formally. I ended up including far too much background information on all of the albums. Such as the album length [a], the sound of individual tracks or the album as a whole [b], or Noah’s influences [c]. In fact I think that most of the fanzine consisted of this kind of writing. I think that it would have been more suitable as a general review of Noah Lennox as an artist, aimed at an audience who had never listened to him before. Fanzines are usually aimed at audiences who are already familiar with the person, meaning that this background information isn’t needed. I used a lot of description in my writing to demonstrate to the reader how the track or the album sounded. Though I like this descriptive writing, there was no need to do it as my audience will probably know how it sounded. [d] is an example of descriptive writing that I quite liked in my work. However, I realize that it was unnecessary for my audience. I think that one strong bit to my first draft was the introduction [e]. As you can see I have directly addressed the audience by saying “us”, making it a little less formal. Though this was not consistent throughout the fanzine. [c]“Noah Lennox was influenced by the likes of Aphex Twin,” [a]“Panda Bear consists of 14 songs, lasting 53:37 minutes” [b]“The songs are all a mixture of acoustic guitar and piano, janky, hollow sounding electronic sounds, and this child-like sweet voice that Noah has” [d]“In fact the entire album consists of seemingly endless sample loops that drive you into a complete state of numb.” [e]“let us reminisce over what he has given to us in these past 16 years…”
  4. 4. (final draft) In my final draft I added a few paragraphs dedicated to more personal feelings about each album. This more personal writing is better suited to a fanzine as the audience is already familiar with the work, so wont want to read tones of background information. [f] is an example of where I have written about a more personal experience with the music. As well as adding in more personal experiences, I took out most of the background information, such as album lengths. However I did end up keeping a small amount of background information, such as the record labels each album came out on. I tended to speak more on matters that a fan would already know in my final draft. For example [g], which refers to how Panda Bear’s albums always come out much later than planned. I tried to write much less formally this time. For example [h], where rather than giving a formal reference to the interview I was thinking about I just said “in an interview somewhere”. I think that I kept quite a few of the descriptive elements of my fanzine. Though I don’t think that they are that necessary for my audience, I quite like the descriptive writing. I think it makes the fanzine a bit more pleasant to read. I was able to time this aspect of the project really well. I did a little bit of work on my first draft at home, enabling me more time to make improvements to my work. Prior to writing I felt that I also had a good idea about what I wanted to write about, giving me a bit of a head start. [g]“in true Panda Bear fashion, it’s not actually dropping until January 13th next year.” [f]“I can see that this album is coming from a really dark place from Panda, and that usually makes for the best kind of music, as sad as that sounds. However I really cant get into this album at all. Personally I think that style Panda has got going on with more recent albums fits him like a glove.” [h]“I saw in an interview somewhere a while ago that when Animal Collective are creating an album they try to do something completely different to the last album”
  5. 5. Fanzine layout For my fanzine layout, my designs was mainly inspired by the Animal Collective website. I took a screenshot of a segment of their website and used it as my background [i]. I was also inspired by some of the images that they used for the background of their website, for example [j], which inspired to me create an image for my fanzine using similar colours and patterns [k]. For my text and for some of the patterns I created I used a really fluorescent green colour. This was to match the green grid pattern from the background. I also think that the colour looks pretty striking and weird, suiting the artist that I was covering in my fanzine. In my initial planning for my fanzine layout I selected a few kinds of fonts that I liked, however I didn’t end up using any of the ones I thought. This was because most of them were not clear enough it read in a small size. I decided to use a really bold font to make it more readable. This was the font ‘Minecrafter’ [l]. Another font I considered using was ‘ceriph 05_56’ [m]. This font fitted in with this weird glitchy technology theme I had going on with my designs, however I still felt that it wasn’t clear enough to read. I still think that perhaps the fanzine is quite difficult to read. On each page I separated the text out into columns to break it up making it a bit more readable. I started out in my first draft with 5 pages, and about 6 columns on each page, however I wanted to reduce it down as much as I could by using wider columns. I managed to get it down to 3 pages, and at most 3 columns on a page. [i] [j] [k] [l] [m]
  6. 6. For my pages, as opposed to doing plain A4 sized pages, I though I would create my own page size. Fanzines don’t tend to have a specific style, they can be much more experimental. I thought about the art book that was made for Animal Collectives film ODDSAC [n]. The pages were longer than they were wide. In my first layout draft I had my pages extremely narrow [o]. I wanted to limit the amount of pages I used for my fanzine, so I needed to make the pages a bit wider to allow more text on each page. For my final layout the page was quite a bit wider [p]. [o] [p] [n]
  7. 7. From my research into fanzines, I found that many of them looked quite home a made. They sometimes features hand drawn looking artworks, rather than high quality photography that you might find in a magazine. I was inspired by [q] to include some of my own hand drawn work. Though I decided not to draw images, instead I drew up my own title. The main theme running through my designs was somewhat technology based, this meant lots of perfect straight lines. The title I drew up didn’t fit this criteria, however by turning it a bight colour and using two layers it came out looking all glitchy, and fitted in with the rest of my designs. Because of the many small details I wanted to add into my fanzine design, such as image [1], I needed to give myself plenty of time to come up with these designs, create them, and work out how to incorporate them into my work. I spent a fair amount of time experimenting with different designs to incorporate in my fanzine. I played around a lot with the positioning of [1]. Image [2] you can see where I’ve tried to incorporate a drawing of mine into the [1]. I thought that this looked a bit too messy so I didn’t use it for my final design. One problem I faced was trying to narrow down the amount of pages I used, narrowing down the amount of columns, and getting the columns spaced out neatly. This was something that I spend a lot of production time on, so perhaps other aspects may have got neglected. However this didn’t impact on when I got the design finished, as I still managed to finish in time. [q] [r] [1] [2]
  8. 8. I think that my finished product is pretty interesting. Like many fanzines, I have included quite a bit of detail, and put quite a bit of thought into the look of my fanzine. I knew beforehand that I wanted to have a page that was shaped longer than it was wide, like a photograph, however I changed the dimensions a few times. One of the first things that I created towards my fanzine was the title that I drew up and scanned into the computer. I may have done quite a few bits of post production of it, but the intention was always the same. Though I changed the fonts a few times, I stuck with the same colour throughout.
  9. 9. Fan Interview
  10. 10. (first draft) In the first draft of my fan interview I did an extremely basic question answer layout, and features a small introduction. I labeled the questions I asked with “ME:” and labeled the fans answer with “FAN:”. This structure was efficient, however didn’t make for a very interesting read. I think that the introduction was quite good. It give the audience a specific reason for the interview existing, rather than it just appearing as a random interview. I think that [s] shows where I did this. In the introduction I also give the reader the key information that they need to know about the new album. I think that this will encourage Panda Bear fans to read [s]“During the hype this new album has created, I asked a keen fan to let me know what it is they love so much about Panda.” the article as they will be interested in the new album coming out. Although this fan interview has quite a boring structure, one positive is that it was extremely quick to write up. This left me plenty of time to make improvements.
  11. 11. (final)
  12. 12. This time I expanded my question and answer bit a lot more. I got rid of my questions, and instead added in some context before each answer. For example [t]. All of the bits in italics shows where I gave context to the answer, as opposed to writing to writing out my questions. I think that this makes for much more engaging reading, and is more appropriate for a magazine. To collect my information for my fan interview I needed to put out a survey. I managed to gather together quite a few responses to my questions. I think that the responses I chose to use in the end were the best choice, as they were the most detailed. They gave about a paragraph for each question. One worded or shorter answers wouldn’t have been appropriate to use as it would have been much shorter and less interesting to read. In my first draft I only featured an introduction. However for my final fan interview I included a short line at the end [u] to finish it better. This line at the end links in with my introduction nicely, and emphasizes the reasoning for the existence of the interview. The last line I used is an advert, which is something you commonly find alongside in magazines. Many interviews exist as forms of advertisement. The first draft was extremely quick to finish as all I needed to do was write out the questions and answers from Survey Monkey in an extremely basic format, and then add an introduction. It was the second draft that took the longest as I needed to figure out how to give my answers context without including my questions in the article, and make the [t]“On the new EP, Panda has definitely changed up his vocals. Normally he has then firmly in the background of his songs, but this time its put them more in the foreground of the songs, especially on the song Mr Noah. Typically, his lyrics are difficult to make out, but his super personal lyrics make for some beautiful reading on lyricalcollective. “Lyrically I find it quite difficult to distinguish certain words on a lot of Panda Bear songs. His songs for me are not about the lyrics, but what the music makes me feel. However the lyrics in ‘Take Pills’ stand out to me.”” [u]“Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper is available now to pre order at 2-10-14/panda-bear-meets-the-grim- reaper/.”
  13. 13. Fan Interview layout
  14. 14. As my chosen celebrity was quite obscure, I felt that they could perhaps appear in a more obscure magazine. This meant that I was a little more free to play around with fonts, layouts and images. One thing that I really like about my fan interview layout is the font and positioning of the title. [v] shows you how I positioned it initially. I liked this positioning, however I wanted to allow myself some more space for text. [w] shows how I changed the layout. The Image stayed in the same position, so did the words “Panda Bear”, though I moved “Fan Interview” underneath the image. I think that the title isn’t positioned exactly where you’d expect it, which makes it a little more interesting. In the title I also had the text overlapping slightly, again making it a little more obscure. I really like the font I chose for my title. I chose selected it from the initial ideas I generated. Its very simple, though with a small amount of detail that doesn’t obstruct you from being able to read it. The font was called ‘Xack’. The image I used for the fan interview is one of the artworks that will be sold inside CD and vinyl copies of his new album. This is relevant to the article, as the new album is something I spoke about in the introduction and right at the end of the article. For the main text I used a really simple font as I want for people to be able to read it. The font I used was called ‘Myriad Pro’. It wasn’t one that I chose in my initial ideas as most of the fonts from my initial ideas were too difficult to read in smaller sizes. I put the answers that were given in the interview in a light grey colour to make it obvious that these bits were different from the main text [x], I also put the short advert at the end on the article in grey to separate that from the rest of the text as well. All of the other text was in black. Black and grey are two very simple colours. I [v] [w] [x]
  15. 15. didn’t want for my text to be too brightly coloured so that it might be unreadable to some people. I think that brightly colour text would also not be appropriate for a magazine article. I rarely see magazine articles featuring large quantities of colourful text. Like my fanzine, I put all of the text in columns. This is definitely typical of a magazine layout. I think that adding columns breaks up the text, making it easier to read and can make a large amount of text look a little smaller perhaps. Another obscure feature I added to my fan interview was instead of classic pace numbers, I used lines to symbolize the page numbers, as shown in [y]. These were placed at the bottom right corner of the pages. Prior to making this one, I had already designed my fanzine layout. I used the time I had spare after making my fanzine to create my fan interview layout. This meant that I had a lot less time to play around with layouts, imagery and fonts. I think that my layout is quite basic in some areas, though more interesting in others. Though if I had more time to think about it I could have come up with a more interesting layout over all, however this may not have improved it as it could have become too messy and experimental for a magazine. One thing that I have noticed since finishing my fan interview layout is that the widths of the two columns on the front page are different. I think that if I had had more time to complete my layout then I may have noticed that beforehand. [y]
  16. 16. I think that my finished product has some interesting aspects to it, though due to timing there are some parts that are a little plain, and perhaps there are some imperfections. As I created this in the spare time I had after I finished the fanzine, I didn’t get the opportunity to do the same research and planning as I got to do with the fanzine. This meant that I didn’t get so much inspiration, or insight into the conventions of a magazine layout. However I do have experience in reading magazines so I managed to take inspiration from memory. Prior to creating the layout I knew that I wanted to do something interesting with the text. For the fanzine I got to do a lot of interesting things with my images, however magazine do not tend to focus so much on the imagery, and more on the text. I used a font that I planned on using initially for my fanzine though wasn’t suitable. I found it was much better suited to the title of the magazine as it is very clean and simple when enlarged. I think that a lot of my inspiration has come from Dazed and Confused magazine (example below). Especially in terms of font style. I really like the more minimalist look that they have. Their pages are very black and white, and the text is all really clear and readable, though slightly edgy. I tried to incorporate that into my own magazine layout.
  17. 17. Side Bar
  18. 18. (first draft) The side bar was meant to show the reader a shortened version of the main fan interview. I needed to select some key bits of the article, and condense them down into about 100 words. In my first draft I selected a bit of the introduction, so that the audience got an idea of what they were about to read straight away. I also included one of the questions. This questions was “Which do you think has been Panda Bear’s quintessential album?” and for that question I put a shortened down version of the persons answer, where I just included what I though were the most important bits. I think that just selecting one of the questions may seen quite random. I don’t think that there was any particular question that stood out to me as the most important. I selected that question because it had quite a nice answer. At first it took me a while to decide what I was going to use as my side bar. I found that bit quite difficult. Though once I had decided, condensed everything down and writing it out I found quite easy and quick.
  19. 19. (final) Because I changed my fan interview quite a lot I needed to change my side bar to go with the style of the new fan interview. In my previous side bar I had used the simple question answer format, labeled “ME:” and “FAN:”. This time I needed to condense down a much larger bit of text, and select key areas of that text to include, and filter out the stuff that wasn’t needed. In this version I didn’t include the introduction, however I think that my side bar still begins pretty well, and would be effective in drawing in the readers attention. As opposed to using a segment of one question, I used segments from a few different questions. I think the questions I selected were a good choice as they give a clear indication to the theme of the article. It gives people the opportunity to judge whether they would be interested in the article or not. As I had a lot more writing for my final draft of the fan interview I had a lot more text to filter through to find the most interesting stuff. This also made it more difficult to got it down to the right amount of text. This final draft took quite a bit longer to produce than the previous side bar.
  20. 20. Here is an example of a sidebar from an article on skiing events. The sidebar includes a simple summary of what the article is about so that the audience knows straight away whether they would be interested in reading it or not. My sidebar includes some short segments of the article that would give the audience an idea of what the article covers, rather than just a summary. My sidebar is also a little longer than this one. Their sidebar is just 2 sentences long, where as mine is more like 7. I think that if I had made mine a little shorter, and perhaps created more of a summary than just pulling segments from the article, that would have improved it.
  21. 21. Press Release
  22. 22. For the press release I needed to stick to giving out key information first, then to add in a little background information later. The main purpose of a press release is to inform the reader of the upcoming release, so it is best to give out the key information first. I ended up giving most of the key information in the first paragraph, however continuing the key information another 3 paragraphs down. I feel like I should have ordered my paragraphs better. I should have perhaps merged the first and fourth paragraph together, or at least have put them next to each other. One good thing about my press release is that I have incorporated a few quotes from Noah Lennox about the album [w] (next page). I think that this is information that fans will be interested in reading about. I also incorporated a quote from a track review of a song that was released on the new EP [x] (next page). I didn’t end up writing too much for my press release. I could have perhaps filled it out with a bit more background information. I did a paragraph explaining a bit about who Noah Lennox is, and a paragraph on his previous album. I perhaps could have discussed another album. I found that I could write the key information out very quickly, such as what was being released, when it was being released and where you could pre order it. It took me quite a while however to bulk out the rest of my press release with other information. During the research stage of this project I
  23. 23. [w]“The drum stuff, I feel, is a real focal point of the music. It's heavier and break-centric music.” [x]“If you’re so inclined, you might even be able to dance to this one—not necessarily a fate predicted by Tomboy.” acquired a lot of information on Noah Lennox’s career as Panda Bear, so I needed to spend some time filtering through my information to get stuff in that would be relevant to my press release. This was made slightly simpler as I had tagged every page of my research with key words, so I was able to search for certain words to find the relevant information. Here is a press release from NME magazine, covering an upcoming album from Bjork. Like mine, this press release contains the important information about the album, such as the albums name, what the album is, the artist and the label releasing it, plus others involved in the production of the album, and when the album is to be released. In this press release they have included a quote from the artist about the upcoming album. I didn’t include any direct quotes from the artist I covered, though I did include a quote from an existing article about the upcoming album. They have also included an image of the artist, which I didn’t in mine. In my press release, I included quite a bit of background information on the artist I covered, where as they haven’t in this NME press release. I also included a link to the website where you can pre order the album. I think that these aspects were quite important for the press release. The audience will be interested to know where they can get the album, and perhaps some people may be interested in knowing a bit of background information on the artist if they haven’t already heard of them.
  24. 24. Tabloid
  25. 25. (first draft)
  26. 26. In order to write my tabloid article about Noah Lennox I needed to think of something that he might do that could be news worthy. Noah is quite an obscure artist, and would not typically be seen featured in a tabloid news article, so this task was quite difficult. I decided in the end to cover his association with the animal welfare charity PETA. At first I wrote the article from a compassionate point of view. I spoke about how “Kind-hearted” Noah is, and how he “generously donated” to the charity. I gave a quote from a different company [y], which I think was useful for backing up statements about what a kind person Noah is. I also made up a quote from Noah’s ‘speech’ [z] which was useful for backing up the story. In my article, I put [z] in a larger font to draw attention to it. [y]“We have worked with lots of different celebrities on shoe lines, but no one else has been quite like Animal Collective. They hold a special place in our heart. We feel that as well as giving off the right image, they are genuinely nice people, and easy to work with. Their shoes sold out faster than anyone’s ever have too.” [z]“Everyday the homes the animals we share our planet with are being destroyed, and replaced with dull, grey concrete.” Typically for a tabloid article, they would use quite low register language, making it a bit more relatable for the audience. In a few parts of my tabloid I used more chatty language, for example [3]. I used an image in my article [4] to break up the writing a little bit for the reader. I used this particular image of Noah and two fellow Animal Collective members, as it featured an animal in the image, which made it a lot more relevant to the story. It could almost look as if it was taken for the story. [3]“Okay, so not an actual panda” [4]
  27. 27. (final) For my final draft of my tabloid article I wrote the story from a completely different angle. In fact I changed everything but the title. Last time I wrote about Noah supporting PETA as a good thing. I spoke very positively of PETA and of Noah. However thins time I wrote the article from the point of view of someone who is completely against PETA. I though it could be more likely that this would be the angle taken from someone who writes for a tabloid newspaper, and perhaps more likely to be what someone who reads a tabloid newspaper wants to read. This article is a lot more sensationalist that my previous article. I wanted for my reader to feel outraged at the charity and at Noah. In order to do this, I included lots of shocking facts about PETA such as [5]. Like the previous draft, I tried to write in quite a low register. For example saying “ ban our beacon” rather than just “ban beacon”. Saying our is directly addressing the audience, making it sound more chatty. Another example of where I have addressed the reader is [6] (next page). I did significantly less writing for this draft than I did in the last one. I don’t think that this story would be particularly big news in a tabloid newspaper, so I feel like it doesn’t need lots of detail. The reader will probably not want to sit and read masses of detail on this story so I think that the story is much more effective shorter. [5]“Not only that, but PETA has given thousands to convicted violent criminals, such as the Animal Liberation Front (ALF). The ALF are an organisation responsible for burning down research labs. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t want to be associated with these people.”
  28. 28. [6]“You like wearing you favourite leather jacket? Nope not anymore, gone too! Your child is begging you to take them to go and see the monkeys at the zoo, sorry cant do that either.” In my first draft I had to take quite a long time to generate an idea for what I could write in my article. For my final draft I knew what subject I was going to be covering, however I needed to completely rewrite the previous draft I did. Typically my final draft doesn’t take too long as I’ve usually got a pretty good idea of what I’m writing, and I will already have a sort of outline for my writing from my first draft. This time I had no outline what so ever as I wanted to write everything completely differently, just a vague idea. This meant the final draft took a lot longer than usual. Although I didn’t have to write as much text this time as I did in my first draft. This is an article from the Daily Mail covering a story on One Direction star Louis Tomlinson. I think that this article demonstrates how different my tabloid article is to other tabloid articles. When it comes to celebrity news, a tabloid paper will usually cover their love life, like in this article, or their appearance. My article, covering the band members association with PETA would perhaps not be something that would be seen in a tabloid paper, and might not be interesting to the audience. However, with both this article and my own, the story has been sensationalized a little, in order to make it newsworthy and more interesting for the audience. As my story might not typically be that interesting to the target audience for a tabloid newspaper, I have tried to tailor it to them a little more by making claims that might shock or anger people, to make it more interesting.
  29. 29. Obituary
  30. 30. (first draft)
  31. 31. For my obituary I needed to give an overview of his life and career. This meant gathering together almost all of the information I had acquired about him, and putting it in chronological order. One thing that I had difficulty with was that I had mainly researched Noah’s career as Panda Bear, and less his career with Animal Collective and Jane. I found that I needed to do a little extra research before writing my obituary. In my obituary I split up each stage of his life up to his death into paragraphs. I found that this was a very neat way of writing it. I think I could have been a bit over faced by the amount of information about his life that I could have included but splitting it up into paragraphs and putting them in the right order was quite an easy way of doing it. I also think I did quite well to only pick out the key information from all of my research, rather than rambling on about his life for pages and pages. I gave a brief introduction where I explained straight away that Noah had died and how. I worded it In a way that was respectful and mindful of his friends and family [7]. I eased gently into writing that he had passed away, rather than coming out with it straight away. I also spoke kindly of Noah. Further towards the end of the obituary I made direct references to a particular song that he wrote [8]. I thought that this may give some ease to those who knew Noah, and give those who may have never hear of Noah Lennox an idea of what kind of person he was. I did a similar thing again in the final paragraph [9]. I think that these were both really nice personal touches to my obituary. [7]“Today we lose a wonderful father, husband, brother, son, friend and inspiration. Noah Lennox, a man who brought so many so much joy, has sadly passed away.” [8]“In Animal Collective’s latest album Centipede HZ, Noah sings lead on the track New Town Burnout. A part in the song goes “No more little fights. Never more a broke mess at night.” Its clear that Noah, a year before his death, had finally faced his demons.” [9]“he was working on a new album, titled Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper. As dark as the title makes the album seem, it was meant as a celebration, and to show how new growth sometimes requires death. For Noah’s family and friends in these dark times, perhaps this album is the guidance that they need.”
  32. 32. (final)
  33. 33. In my second draft I changed the time that I wrote the article in. In the first article I wrote it as if Noah had died than day. However this time I wrote it as if it was two weeks after his death. I think that this is perhaps more typical of an obituary. In my first draft I also included a back story to how he died [10], though I got rid of this bit. I thought that as I was writing from 2 weeks after his death, people would already know how he had died. It would be more likely that people would want to read about his life. Despite these two changed, I kept everything the same. I liked how everything was written and laid out. I also think that all of the content was key to his life, and would be interesting to the reader. There was quite a lot of research and writing to be done for the obituary as Noah had had quite a varied career. The first draft took quite a long time to write. I spent most of my time trying to condense all of the research I had done about his life into a few pages, and then putting everything in order. Although because I seemed to get things pretty much right first time, the final draft didn’t take very long at all. [10]“Noah was driving home from the studio, where he was putting the finishing touches on his new album. Pete Kember (aka Sonic Boom) who Noah was working with at the time, was one of the last people to see him alive.”
  34. 34. This is Errol Brown’s obituary, from the Guardian. Like the obituary I wrote, they have included background information on his life, the way that he got into music, and his musical career. They also included the vital information the audience would want to know, such as who he was, the date he was born, and the date he died. In their article they have included quotes from Errol himself before he passed away, which I didn’t include in mine, though perhaps I could have. In my article, I included some more information on Noah’s personal life, than they have included in this obituary. I included information on how he met his wife, where he went to school and university and what he studied, and his interests.