Writing Workshop

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Writing Workshop

  1. 1. Writing Basics Workshop
  2. 2. Writing for Real Readers <ul><li>If a writer falls in the woods, does anyone care? </li></ul><ul><li>Writing by any other name is still a pain. </li></ul><ul><li>Real words for real people. </li></ul><ul><li>So what? </li></ul><ul><li>Love it or leave it. </li></ul><ul><li>Getting to know you. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Think About It <ul><li>Standard English? </li></ul><ul><li>If you don’t know by now, why bother? </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship between writing and intelligence </li></ul><ul><li>Relationship between thinking and writing </li></ul><ul><li>Improving writing no help without improving thinking </li></ul>
  4. 4. Think About It <ul><li>Language hierarchy </li></ul><ul><li>Words </li></ul><ul><li>Phrases </li></ul><ul><li>Clauses </li></ul><ul><li>Sentences </li></ul><ul><li>Paragraphs </li></ul><ul><li>Papers, stories, books, etc. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Think about it <ul><li>Vary Sentence Types to Avoid Reader Boredom </li></ul><ul><li>Simple </li></ul><ul><li>Compound </li></ul><ul><li>Complex </li></ul><ul><li>Compound-Complex </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Simple Truth <ul><li>High-quality learning environments are a necessary precondition for facilitation and enhancement of the ongoing learning process. </li></ul><ul><li>Children need good schools if they are to learn properly. </li></ul>
  7. 7. The Simple Truth <ul><li>Before the travel agent was completely able to finish explaining the various differences among all of the many unique packages his travel agency was offering, the customer changed her future plans. </li></ul><ul><li>The customer changed her plans before the travel agent finished explaining the differences among the unique vacation packages his agency offered. </li></ul>
  8. 8. The Simple Truth <ul><li>That’s very unique. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Things You Learned in Grade School <ul><li>It’s/its </li></ul><ul><li>There/their/they’re </li></ul><ul><li>To/too/two </li></ul><ul><li>1920’s/MBA’s </li></ul><ul><li>Everyone is eating at their home tonight. </li></ul><ul><li>Subject/verb agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Object of a preposition can’t be the subject of a sentence </li></ul><ul><li>Pronoun/antecedent agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Parallel structure </li></ul>
  10. 10. Things You Learned in Grade School <ul><li>Commas </li></ul><ul><li>Semicolons </li></ul><ul><li>Quotation marks </li></ul><ul><li>Dashes/hyphens </li></ul>
  11. 11. Things You Learned in Grade School <ul><li>Verb Tense </li></ul><ul><li>Past, present, future </li></ul><ul><li>Past, present and future perfect </li></ul><ul><li>Past, present and future progressive </li></ul><ul><li>Past, present and future perfect progressive </li></ul>
  12. 12. Department of Redundancy Department <ul><li>Large in size </li></ul><ul><li>Often times </li></ul><ul><li>Bright in color </li></ul><ul><li>Heavy weight </li></ul><ul><li>Cheap in quality </li></ul><ul><li>In a confused state </li></ul><ul><li>Unusual in nature </li></ul>
  13. 13. A Few Rules <ul><li>Average sentence length of 15-20 words </li></ul><ul><li>Active verbs instead of passive verbs </li></ul><ul><li>Everyday English </li></ul><ul><li>Conciseness </li></ul><ul><li>Clear, helpful headings </li></ul><ul><li>Good type size and clear typeface </li></ul><ul><li>Average line length of between 7-12 words </li></ul>
  14. 14. Writing Effective Headlines <ul><li>Make sure reader knows what the story is about </li></ul><ul><li>Draw apathetic reader into the body copy </li></ul><ul><li>Use active verbs; avoid label heads </li></ul><ul><li>Deliver what you promise </li></ul><ul><li>Draw on colloquialisms and figures of speech </li></ul><ul><li>Use subheads when warranted </li></ul>
  15. 15. E-Mail – The Good <ul><li>Faster, easier and cheaper than fax or mail. </li></ul><ul><li>Can involve multiple recipients/readers. </li></ul><ul><li>Ranks above memos and faxes as organizational communication tool. </li></ul><ul><li>Can “flatten” an organization. </li></ul>
  16. 16. E-Mails – The Bad <ul><li>Spam. </li></ul><ul><li>Potential to carry viruses. </li></ul><ul><li>Potential to be misinterpreted. </li></ul><ul><li>Privacy may be compromised with e-mail. </li></ul><ul><li>Perceived as cold, impersonal. </li></ul><ul><li>Overuse substitutes for face-to-face contact. </li></ul>
  17. 17. A Few Tips <ul><li>Keep e-mails short. </li></ul><ul><li>Separate message into several paragraphs. </li></ul><ul><li>If important, print off to proofread. </li></ul><ul><li>Spell-check/grammar check. </li></ul><ul><li>Use descriptive subject line. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t make assumptions about reader’s e-mail client. </li></ul><ul><li>Good and bad news should be delivered in person. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Questions?

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