Sit Down and Write <ul><li>Ch. 1 of “Writing Across the Media,” by James G. Stovall (6th Ed.) </li></ul>Graham Garner Writ...
Writing is Hard Work <ul><li>It requires us to give of ourselves. </li></ul><ul><li>It demands your total attention. </li>...
What is Good Writing? <ul><li>Efficient. Minimum number of words to make a point. </li></ul><ul><li>Precise. Words used fo...
Who Do You Write For? <ul><li>Not yourself. </li></ul><ul><li>Not for a teacher. </li></ul><ul><li>Not for a friend. </li>...
How Do You Write for the Masses? <ul><li>Collaborate. Use editors and other writers. </li></ul><ul><li>Have integrity. Don...
Know the Tools of the Trade <ul><li>Spelling. </li></ul><ul><li>Grammar. </li></ul><ul><li>Vocabulary. </li></ul><ul><li>Y...
Know the Subject <ul><li>Research. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn the background. </li></ul><ul><li>Understand the product. </li>...
Write it Down <ul><li>Just Do It. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop a routine. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn to concentrate. </li></ul><...
Edit and Rewrite <ul><li>Reread. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can it be clearer? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can it be more precis...
Improving: Write Simply <ul><li>Clarity comes from simplicity. </li></ul>
Improving: Use Simple Words <ul><li>Stay away from big or complicated words. </li></ul><ul><li>Impress your reader with th...
Improving: Use Simple Sentences <ul><li>Does it always have to be subject-predicate or subject-verb-object? </li></ul><ul>...
Improving: Use Fewer Words <ul><li>Next to simplicity is brevity. </li></ul><ul><li>Be on the hunt for words, phrases and ...
Improving: Eliminate Jargon, Clichés and Bureaucratese <ul><li>Jargon: Technical language used in specialized fields. </li...
Improving: Use Familiar Words <ul><li>You are not a Word-of-the-Day calendar. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be a speed bump in y...
Improving: Vary  Sentence Type and Length <ul><li>Use all four kinds of sentence structures: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Simple ...
Improving: Pay Attention to Nouns and Verbs <ul><li>Nouns and verbs are the strongest words </li></ul><ul><li>Make them yo...
Improving: Transitions <ul><li>They tie together what you mean. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t create stops or surprises. </li></...
Differences in Writing  for Mass Media <ul><li>Subject Matter. There is a wider variety. </li></ul><ul><li>Purpose. It’s t...
Becoming a Professional <ul><li>Versatility. </li></ul><ul><li>News writing: Inverted pyramid. </li></ul><ul><li>Broadcast...
Text and Images <ul><li>Integrate graphics and text, especially on the Web. </li></ul><ul><li>Leonardo da Vinci. </li></ul...
Web Sites to Visit <ul><li>American Society of Journalists and Authors:  www.asja.org </li></ul><ul><li>American Society o...
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Sit Down and Write

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Adapted from Ch. 1 of James G. Stovall\'s, \"Writing Across the Media,\" 6th edition.

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Sit Down and Write

  1. 1. Sit Down and Write <ul><li>Ch. 1 of “Writing Across the Media,” by James G. Stovall (6th Ed.) </li></ul>Graham Garner Writing Across the Media MC 120/299 Fall 2008
  2. 2. Writing is Hard Work <ul><li>It requires us to give of ourselves. </li></ul><ul><li>It demands your total attention. </li></ul><ul><li>When published, it means putting aside our ego and letting others give feedback. </li></ul><ul><li>It’s a process. </li></ul><ul><li>It’s building. </li></ul><ul><li>Requires reading good writing. </li></ul>
  3. 3. What is Good Writing? <ul><li>Efficient. Minimum number of words to make a point. </li></ul><ul><li>Precise. Words used for their exact meaning. </li></ul><ul><li>Clear. Leaves no doubt or confusion in reader’s mind. </li></ul><ul><li>Modest. Doesn’t show off or draw attention to itself. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Who Do You Write For? <ul><li>Not yourself. </li></ul><ul><li>Not for a teacher. </li></ul><ul><li>Not for a friend. </li></ul><ul><li>Not for other writers. </li></ul><ul><li>Write for the masses. </li></ul>
  5. 5. How Do You Write for the Masses? <ul><li>Collaborate. Use editors and other writers. </li></ul><ul><li>Have integrity. Don’t accept inaccuracies or imprecision. </li></ul><ul><li>Be humble. You can always do better. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Know the Tools of the Trade <ul><li>Spelling. </li></ul><ul><li>Grammar. </li></ul><ul><li>Vocabulary. </li></ul><ul><li>You are caretaker of the language. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Know the Subject <ul><li>Research. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn the background. </li></ul><ul><li>Understand the product. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask questions of experts. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Write it Down <ul><li>Just Do It. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop a routine. </li></ul><ul><li>Learn to concentrate. </li></ul><ul><li>Take lots of notes. Then, prioritize. </li></ul><ul><li>Take risks. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Edit and Rewrite <ul><li>Reread. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can it be clearer? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can it be more precise? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can it be more readable? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Edit. </li></ul><ul><li>Rewrite. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Improving: Write Simply <ul><li>Clarity comes from simplicity. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Improving: Use Simple Words <ul><li>Stay away from big or complicated words. </li></ul><ul><li>Impress your reader with the story, not your prose. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Improving: Use Simple Sentences <ul><li>Does it always have to be subject-predicate or subject-verb-object? </li></ul><ul><li>Make it easy to read </li></ul>
  13. 13. Improving: Use Fewer Words <ul><li>Next to simplicity is brevity. </li></ul><ul><li>Be on the hunt for words, phrases and sentences that don’t add substance. </li></ul><ul><li>Stay away from fancy phrases. </li></ul><ul><li>Focus your reader on the story, not your writing. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Improving: Eliminate Jargon, Clichés and Bureaucratese <ul><li>Jargon: Technical language used in specialized fields. </li></ul><ul><li>Clichés: Overused words, phrases and clauses. </li></ul><ul><li>Bureaucratese: It’s lathered writing. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Improving: Use Familiar Words <ul><li>You are not a Word-of-the-Day calendar. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t be a speed bump in your readers’ path. </li></ul><ul><li>Worse yet, don’t be a parking lot full of speed bumps. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid foreign phrases. </li></ul>
  16. 16. Improving: Vary Sentence Type and Length <ul><li>Use all four kinds of sentence structures: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Simple </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compound </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complex </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compound-Complex </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Don’t use inverted sentences (subject at the end). </li></ul>
  17. 17. Improving: Pay Attention to Nouns and Verbs <ul><li>Nouns and verbs are the strongest words </li></ul><ul><li>Make them your foundation, or core, and use all other word types to build on or around them. </li></ul><ul><li>A good verb offers both action and description. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Improving: Transitions <ul><li>They tie together what you mean. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t create stops or surprises. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep the train rolling. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Differences in Writing for Mass Media <ul><li>Subject Matter. There is a wider variety. </li></ul><ul><li>Purpose. It’s threefold — inform, entertain, persuade. </li></ul><ul><li>Audience. Much broader demographic. </li></ul><ul><li>Circumstances of the Writing. More collaboration, more deadlines, and writing amongst other writers. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Becoming a Professional <ul><li>Versatility. </li></ul><ul><li>News writing: Inverted pyramid. </li></ul><ul><li>Broadcast writing: dramatic unity. </li></ul><ul><li>Advertising copy: Facility with language for persuasive effect. </li></ul><ul><li>Public relations: all above, plus good letter writing. </li></ul><ul><li>Web: Nonlinear hypertext, headlines, subheads, summaries. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Text and Images <ul><li>Integrate graphics and text, especially on the Web. </li></ul><ul><li>Leonardo da Vinci. </li></ul><ul><li>Dan Brown novel in other editions; David McCulloch’s 1776. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Web Sites to Visit <ul><li>American Society of Journalists and Authors: www.asja.org </li></ul><ul><li>American Society of Newspaper Editors: www.asne.org </li></ul><ul><li>Power of Words: www.projo.com/words </li></ul><ul><li>Poynter’s Online “Fifty Writing Tools”: www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=78&aid=103943 </li></ul><ul><li>Writers Write: The Write Resource: www.writerswrite.com </li></ul>

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