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Thread: Great Writing

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    SitePoint Evangelist old_expat's Avatar
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    Great Writing

    You may not like what Mary Riddell writes about here, but read this article.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/monarchy/s...185385,00.html

    It's some of the best prose I have read in many a day.

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    On the greatness of this prose, I beg to differ.

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    SitePoint Guru MikeBigg's Avatar
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    Same here - but then I'm not a typical grauniad reader, so probably don't like that style.

    Mike

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    Word Painter silver trophy Shyflower's Avatar
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    Nice article... but I'm still a Mark Twain fan.
    Linda Jenkinson
    "Say what you mean. Mean what you say. But don't say it mean." ~Unknown

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    SitePoint Evangelist old_expat's Avatar
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    Well, I like Richard Brautigan as well .. which doesn't necessarily make Mark Twain bad.

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    SitePoint Evangelist old_expat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wilks_eye View Post
    On the greatness of this prose, I beg to differ.
    Why not say why? This is a forum about writing.

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    Word Painter silver trophy Shyflower's Avatar
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    As a news story, it's well-written, but I guess I wouldn't call it prose.
    Linda Jenkinson
    "Say what you mean. Mean what you say. But don't say it mean." ~Unknown

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    i guess i am jealous... i wish i took more writing classes in college.

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    SitePoint Evangelist old_expat's Avatar
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    For the Wikipedia guideline regarding editing articles, see Wikipedia:Manual of Style.

    Prose is writing distinguished from poetry by its greater variety of rhythm and its closer resemblance to the patterns of everyday speech. The word prose comes from the Latin prosa, meaning straightforward, hence the term "prosaic," which is often seen as pejorative. Prose describes the type of writing that prose embodies, unadorned with obvious stylistic devices. Prose writing is usually adopted for the description of facts or the discussion of whatever one's thoughts are, incorporated in free flowing speech. Thus, it may be used for newspapers, capers, magazines, encyclopedias, broadcast media, films, letters, debtor's notes, famous quotes, murder mystery, history, philosophy, biography, linguistic geography and many other forms of media.

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    I'm going to enjoy article at home and to leave my feedback later.

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    SitePoint Wizard megamanXplosion's Avatar
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    I stopped reading at the end of the first paragraph. If the idea "You're trying too hard" arises in the reader's mind, your communication attempt failed. Fancy word uses, word choices, and sentence constructions are more likely to ruin articles than help them because most of the time they are clumsy complications and they distract your reader. The reader is supposed to be thinking of the plot and visualizing the scene but instead the reader is thinking, "That was an interesting use of words." You've failed at communicating the plot and scene to me. When that happens I can either read the paragraph again in the hope that I can scrape your prose off your ideas or I can move along, which takes much less effort.

    Good prose is hidden prose. William Zinsser's book "On Writing Well" is an excellent example of this. You can read many chapters in one sitting without thinking of his writing style. The ideas he sought to convey rush into your mind. When I first read the book, I usually noticed his prose only after he told me to notice it. This is good prose because the ideas remain in the foreground and the prose hides itself in the background.


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